For today’s sensory activity, we have upcycled and used from our home everything needed to create our little game for exploring textures.
By the time kids were ready to move on to something else, we have played this game in 4 different ways!
Read on to see what we used to create our Touch & Match Game and how to play with it!
Before we move to playing, let’s take a look at what’s needed to make textured cards we used for Touch and Match Game:
- cardboard (upcycled from shirt inserts that come with commercial packaging),
- a bunch of different textures (we used wallpaper scraps, felt scraps, fabric scraps, cotton pads, bubble wrap)
- we used a precision knife, scissors, ruler, self-healing cutting mat and corner rounder punch but you can use what you have on hand from tools
Everything we used is in this picture:
Our cards are roughly 3.5″ x 4.5″ but you can make them size as fits you. What’s important is to cut pieces of textured scraps in a little smaller size so you can glue them on each card.
Make 2 cards with each of the textures so you can have pairs. We ended with 14 cards, 7 different textures, 2 of each.For storage / game, we have reused wine bottle paper bag because it’s narrow and deep so it’s hard to peek inside when you put your hand. Here are close-up pictures of some of the amazing textures we used:
So, we started with spreading cards on the floor. I wanted kids to freely explore all of the textures. My toddler was a bit surprised when I told her that she can take off her slippers and socks and touch cards with her feet, not only her hands. But soon enough she was all over it. I haven’t included any really rough textures for the first time because I didn’t want to discourage her right from the beginning.
After a while, I suggested we could play Touch and Match Game. Of course, I got to look back saying: “What’s that?”. So I explained how to play this game. Keep one set of the cards in the bag and other laid on the floor. Put your hand inside and touch the card. Try to guess which card / texture matches from cards laid on the floor. Show me the card you think matches than take 2nd card out from the bag to see if you were right. We played a while and toddler and big sister took turns.
Then she took play over and tried to match the cards blindfolded, carrying one in a card and trying to find the matching card stepping from one card to another until she would find the match! Now, that was more than I would though about!
Last game we played was to spread textured cards all over the floor and trying to hop from one to another. The rule was that they can’t hop from one to another card of the same texture. So we burnt some energy this way! Much needed with the lousy weather outside! The only problem is, they could hardly stand still for this whole time so I have only a few (not so fuzzy) pictures.
Can you think of some other ways to use these cards?
We would love to hear them!
To get a bit more background about the importance of sensory play, we recommend you to read books Sensory Play – Basics for Parents, Sensory Bins: the What, the How & the Why. It has basics covered with many play ideas, all in easy to understand language (for parents like me!).If you need more in dept information about sensory processing, we can recommend Sensory Processing 101.
Another great book to check is 99 Fine Motor Ideas for Ages 1-5. Packed with fun things to do with toddlers and preschoolers!
Mihaela runs Best Toys 4 Toddlers blog and loves to come up with new ideas how to use old toys her 2 daughters keep leaving on the floor to slip over. She loves them despite the fact that they call her mommy few hundred times a day, and it makes her nuts.