Paths to Literacy

for students who are blind or visually impaired

Braille Word Search Puzzles

braille wordsearch
In the first grade curriculum Lesson 2 of Building on Patterns, there is an activity to do a word search based on the vocabulary words from that lesson. Since my student has some usable vision and has never done one before, we will do this first as a large print activity to learn how to do a word search and then we will do it in braille.
I will have her use the indicator dots to mark her answer on the brailled copy so if she makes an error, she can easily fix it without affecting the braille symbol.
You'll also note that the brailled column is off for #10. I did this intentionally. One to see if she notices and two, to show her we all make mistakes and that this is okay. We learn from mistakes.
I really like this idea as I can use this for vocabulary words from her creative writing stories, vocabulary words, contractions, and the list can go on and on.


  • Print copy
  • Brailler
  • Braille Grid paper
  • Braille paper
  • Indicator dots
  • Pencil, pen, crayon (for marking answers on print copy
  • Example 1 and Answer Key


Braille word search

Braille word search collage



Posted by Irish Mom

What are indicator dots? I love this idea! Where can I get the grid paper?

Re: Question

Posted by Liz Eagan Satter

There is a link to what indicator dots are in the second paragraph 1st sentence. Basically indicator dots are foam dots with a sticky back the size of a paper punch that can be used to mark answers. The nice thing is you can change your answer without damaging the braille symbol. The grid paper can be purchased from APH (American Printing House for the Blind): Also check with your TVI, he\she may have some you can use.

Indicator dots

Posted by Ava

Where does one get indicator dots. This seems superior to what I've been using.

Indicator dots

Posted by Charlotte Cushman

Hi Ava,

You can make them with a hole-punch from those sheets of adhesive foam available in craft stores.  Learn more here:

Intentional Errors

Posted by Linda Brown

What a neat idea! I never thought of doing intentional errors. What a cool way to teach editing skills! Would you do this on other assignments or how would you go about doing intentional errors? And do you do braille symbol errors or just formatting?

intentional errors

Posted by Helen Beatty

My student gets 2 jelly beans or a stick of gum every time he found an error that I made (intentional or not) We saved the jelly beans in a jar, then had a class guessing contest. This year we moved on to caramels. He loves finding my mistakes

Re: Intentional Errors

Posted by Liz Eagan Satter

Linda, it depends on the student as to when to do intentional errors. I've done it with a beginning student when they are to scan a line of print looking for a specific braille symbol. I did this to slow her down. I left the symbol out of the line they were scanning. I was able to teach the student to rescan the line. Student's sometimes get hung up on making errors and resist producing braille. By my intentionally making errors, they see that errors happen and that's okay. Catch them and fix them if you can.

I do the intentional errors in braille symbols, words, formatting, the numbering...wherever I can fit them in and I try to make it relate to what we're doing in our lessons. I've been known to braille them a letter filled with errors. I have the students then read my letter. When they see the first error, I then give them the hint that there might be more. I pull out our editing indicator dots (different shapes of dots) and then they read and edit the letter. I model how to react when told my letter has errors and then I rebraille the letter correctly for them. We can then review the two letters. By doing this, it takes the stress off of them and enables them to open up and demonstrate what they know without fear of knowing they made errors. Make sense?

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