Hi friends, this week I am sharing another project that was a collaboration with my awesome teachers. One day while I was hanging out in one of our preschool classes I noticed that are future Braille readers were left out of the ABC cards. This wasn't anything to be mean to our Braille readers. Our teacher just didn't have anything like the print ABC cards that our low vision students were using.
Many print readers have large print letters and activities to help them learn how to recognize and print letters. Annie, our preschool teacher, wanted to include all of her students in the letters center but was a little stumped on how to include her Braille students with the same type of cards her low vision students have. We put our two heads together and came up with these easy DIY Braille cards. These cards are just one idea of many brilliant Braille ideas.
These are simple to make but a tad time consuming.
We made a template of the Braille cell and then copied them so that we would have one for all 26 letters of the alphabet. Then they were laminated and cut out. I bought buttons in black and white colors (for contrast). All the buttons were hot glued into the different Braille dot configurations to make 'Braille letters'. Kudos to our amazing paraprofessionals who helped make these sets. They were all hole punched and put on a book ring to keep them organized and easily managed.
The contrast between the buttons and the paper was meant to be fun for young students. You could easily switch up the colors if you like. Contrasting colors may not always be relevant to future Braille readers. The colors help with appearance with other children in a classroom.
You could also make one Braille cell template, add velcro to both the dots and the buttons so that students could arrange Braille letters (or match to one of the Braille cards) similar to how print students trace or match print letters.
These ABC Braille cards are part of the Expanded Core Curriculum. Braille instruction is part of the area of compensatory skills. Now don't go thinking that compensatory is the only ECC area covered by these cards! The implementation of the cards can also cover other ECC areas such as career education and independent living skills.
We use these cards in our preschool and with our primary grades (that have children with some additional disabilities). However, feel free to use them with whatever grade or ability of student you would like.