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Activity and strategy

Travel Tins: Magnetic Fun To-Go

Parent-made materials that can be used to entertain emerging braille readers

I use this “travel tin” as a fun activity to bring along for lengthy medical appointments, long car rides or dinner at a “sit-down” restaurant for my son Liam. It’s small enough that I can put it in my purse to bring along. Liam enjoys that all the pieces are magnetic so they “stick” to the cover and stay in place.


  • Tin box or container with a lid that fits snugly
  • Magnetic letters and shapes (These can be ready-made or you can glue small magnets to the back of letter tiles ot shapes.)
  • Braille labels on letters and shapes


Activities that could be included in the “travel tin”:

*Tiles with a magnet glued on the back with a braille letter or word on each tile.
travel tin with

How the tiles can be used:

  • Liam is a beginning braille reader. Our tiles spell out our son’s name in braille (one letter per tile). I help Liam “build” his name.
  • Depending on your child’s level, you could have tiles that have words on them so that they could build fun sentences.
  • You could also ask them to find certain words or letters.

travel tin with shapes and letters with braille

*Shapes (made of different materials: wood, foam, etc..) with magnets glued on the backs of them…
Possible uses for shapes:
  • I ask Liam questions like: Can you find the star? What’s this shape? Same or different?
  • Create patterns or designs

Back of the tin:

I put the braille alphabet on the back of the tin and also Liam’s name. He always likes to turn it over and touch the braille.
Collage of travel tins



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