Tactile Alphabet Sharing

Every year I try to think of a fun way to introduce the alphabet and word wall in my classroom. This year I did a tactile alphabet. This was something I used to do a while back, but had taken a break from. I forgot just how fun this is.
Those more-than-adorbs letter toppers are from Amanda Richardson

Why do I like this? It allows my kiddos to start sharing and getting up in front of their peers from the get-go! It sparks conversation and it works on letter names and sounds.

Here is one I did several years ago.... not sure why there isn't title. This was when my classroom had a circus theme:

And my little ones don't know what a Word Wall is... I mean, some of them don't know the difference between a letter and a word yet {That is one of my standards for the year RF.K.1c } But I love how it makes them look at the word wall every single day... good training, because I want them to look there ALL year.

The only bummer is that I don't start using the word wall in the more traditional way until about the 27th day of school {so yes, if you did the math right... I start this whole fiasco on the 2nd day of school.} In the meantime I do have my "Fish Words" up and running {this is what I call sight words... you can read more about this HERE and later these words will feature on both walls}
I do letter A to kick it off... and model how this is supposed to go down.....then I also do X because that would just be plain mean to some poor family! I have a little x-ray fish toy. I do have 29 students so for some letters I do two kids.  I put a little name label next to each item because they like seeing their name on the wall {I tried to work in one year a long time ago so that a child named Katie would share on K day etc... this just doesn't work.}

When the child brings in their item I put in the Surprise Can. What I love are some of the measures they will go to in order to sneak the item to me. It is actually comedy and one of the reasons I love my job. And then there are the kids that just hand it to me and maybe don't quite get the surprise element, but that is rare.
Above you see the Hh day "helmet" going into hiding. This child gave the clue "It is something you put on your head." And listen to these phenomenal guesses I got: A hat... a headband! I was impressed by their ability to factor in both the clue and the letter sound!  For this reason I think this is a fun idea to use in a kinder or first grade room. It can be an introduction to the alphabet or a good review with critical thinking fun!

This works well if the child has practiced a little bit at home and has a clue or two up their sleeve. Below is the letter I use to explain the process to the parents and to tell them their child's assigned letter. Jut click on the image to download this letter for you to use!

Happy Saturday!


  1. This is such a clever idea! I think I might steal this to use at the beginning of our school year in January. :)

    Love, Laughter and Learning in Prep!

  2. What a cute idea! Definitely want to try this next year.

    Carolina Teacher