How to Make Your Own Touch & Feel Book
Touch-and-feel books are designed for toddlers and preschoolers to help them learn about textures. To make one, cut a piece of faux fur in the shape of a bunny or a piece of scaly material in the shape of a fish. Include a variety of textures such as soft, rough and fuzzy, then use these textures with concepts like colors, number, letters, shapes or animals.
1 Gather the Materials
Find materials that represent different textures such as soft, smooth, spiky, rough, slimy, woolen, scaly, or furry. Then, assemble the materials, such as cotton balls, faux fur, corduroy, velveteen, lace, sateen, sandpaper, as well as shells, rubber, ribbon or leather. Look through old clothing, crafting supplies, your garden or around the house. The more variety you have, the better.
2 Construct the Pages
For the pages, choose fabric or paper. If you choose fabric, you can sew the items to the fabric page. This limits what you can include in the book, however. You can glue a sea shell to paper, but not to fabric. If you choose paper, use sturdy card stock. Choose a strong, nontoxic glue, such as white glue or school glue, to attach the items to each page. Consider using two pieces of card stock to create a specific effect. If you are gluing a circular piece of fabric, cut out a circular shape in one piece of card stock, making the cut out about a 1/4-inch smaller than the fabric all the way around. Glue the edges of the fabric around the cut out on the one piece of card stock, then glue the piece of solid card stock behind it. The outlines of the textured piece will be sandwiched between the two pieces of card stock, so young children won't be able to pull it off the page as easily.
3 Add Text
Add information to the touch-and-feel book to help children learn about the textures represented. For example, if you have made a page with a piece of leather, you might include the words "saddle" or "shoes" or you could write a sentence like "Leather is used to make shoes." Cut leather in the shape of the item you want to represent. Consider a theme for your book, such as items that represent the letters of the alphabet, animals or colors. Adding vocabulary and a theme will create learning opportunities for children that extend beyond simple textures.
4 Check for Safety
When you have finished creating the pages, check them for potential safety hazards. Check if you have any items that could become choking hazards, such as buttons a child could pull from the page. Check for sharp edges such as sharp points on sea shells. Make sure none of the items are loose or are items a child could pull from the book. If everything looks fine, bind the book. Regardless of whether you are using fabric or paper, you can cut holes on one side of the pages and bind the pages with metal rings or brads. The method you choose should result in a book a child cannot easily dissemble.