Here is a simple science center set-up that is inexpensive (or free) and quick. This activity is an exploration of the sense of touch and can be used with a unit on the Five Senses.
If you saw the Nature Touch Boxes I posted last year, this is the same idea with a slight twist: these are Texture Touch Boxes.
You will need to collect about six empty cube-shaped tissue boxes. Save empty ones as you use them up at school or ask parents to send them from home. These tissue boxes will be used as “feely” boxes. Children will reach into the box, touch the item, and see if they can find the texture that matches what they feel.
To prepare, you will need to print out the Question Mark Cards (file below) and attach them to the boxes. Or, just attach an index card to the side of the box and draw your own question mark. Choose six texture items, and put one item in each box. You will need two of each texture to place one in the box and one on the table. For example, two pieces of sandpaper, two pieces of cotton, etc.
The children will:
- Touch each item on the table first.
- Reach into a box, feel an item, and guess which item on the table feels the same.
- Pull the item out of the box to see if they were correct.
- Repeat with each item.
In the pictures shown, I used these texture items:
- craft foam
- cotton pad
- double sided tape (stuck to the bottom of the box, so they feel one sticky side)
Other textures to include:
- faux fur
- plastic canvas
- satin ribbon
- grosgrain ribbon
- corrugated cardboard
Many of these items could be found at home, at school, or ask parents or friends to send to you. You’ll only need scrap pieces, so you should be able to get these for free. You can also purchase textured foam sheets that could be used for this activity.
What other items would you include in your texture boxes? Please share them in the comments below!