Phonetic and Mathmatic Wrist Wrappers

I have a container addiction.  I believe it stems from my history as a teacher.  It seems that the second I needed a paper towel tube…and 22-24, no less, I never had them.  So, now as a homeschool mom, I think I’ve taken my container addiction overboard.  I literally can’t throw any sturdy plastic and/or cardboard container away!  My closets runneth over.  It’s U.G.L.Y.  I don’t got no alibi, it’s ugly! Yeah yeah, it’s ugly. (clap, clap, clap).  I cheer often around my children; pray for them.

So, I figured I’d better start creating before TLC does a special on me.  My Strange Addiction:  I Sleep With Toilet Paper Tubes.

Anyhoo, my boys went to the dentist last week and in the treasure chest I saw one of those wrist-slap bracelets.  Remember those?  It led me to this idea…which…these totally aren’t ‘slappable’, but educational, fun, and CHEAP, none the less.  My boys loved them.  Direction are in the captions.

Gather up paper towel tubes, paint, and brushes...and don't need the paint if you don't have it...

Paint the tubes...

Voila! Allow them to dry. (again, no need to paint, realy...unless you need to teach patterns)

Cut the tubes lengthwise

Then, chop 'em up into 1"-2" sections.

Print out lower case letters....

Uppercase (or Capital) too....

Whip out your hot glue gun...(regular 'ol Elmer's would work too)

Place your letters or numbers on.....(Excuse the nails....Manicure ain't in the budget ;))

More numbers (I have a Math-lete on my hands...)

Signs too!!!

Whew! I'm ready!!!!

My 3 year old jumps right in. He loves to spell his name right now.



Noah wants to make his name too!!


Now for some MATH!!!!

We love these things Mom!

There are sooooo many ways to modify these to fit your child’s needs.  Here’s some options:

  • Basic letter recognition
  • Uppercase and Lowercase Matching
  • Sight Word Building
  • Name Games
  • Word Family (remove the first letter, and replace with a different letter aka HAT to PAT)
  • Math…addition, subtraction
  • Fill in the math sentence
  • Patterns!  (You could just use the painted color tubes…red, green, red, green; OR you could glue on symbols to pattern)

Have fun y’all!!!!  And save those paper towel tubes!  (Just don’t mail them to me! ;))


  1. very clever!

  2. that is a really great idea! My daughter would love it! 🙂 thanks for sharing

  3. Alicia Thorson says:

    Oh my goodness….just found you today. And I LOVE YOU ALREADY.
    This is a great idea!!
    This will be my first year homeschooling, & I can’t wait!
    Thanks for the inspiration. 🙂

    • Elizabeth says:

      That’s great Alicia! You’ll love it! At first I thought I wouldn’t….but the old saying…’don’t judge a book by its’ cover’ holds true with homeschooling! Glad you found me! Thanks for visiting!!!

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