Glitter Letter Manipulatives for Learning

These DIY letter manipulatives were very easy to make.  The kids and I have been playing with these letters for a few weeks now.  We love playing with learning elements and we’ve done a lot of letter identification activities.  This one was fun to make and for playing!

Letter Manipulatives

Letter manipulatives are a hands-on tool for supporting letter identification in young kids. This is a great preschool activity that can be used as a pre-writing activity. Helping kids to identify letters with alphabet manipulatives supports early literacy skills. 

Alphabet manipulatives like the ones we made below are fun for helping kids to match uppercase and lower case letters, too. 

They can be used in handwriting tasks or as a writing prompt while working on letter formation

Use these letter manipulatives in several ways:

  • In sensory bins
  • In an I Spy game
  • With writing trays
  • In play dough
DIY letter match manipulatives with glass gems.  These are great for letter identification, matching, memory games, pre-reading.


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How to Make Letter Manipulatives

This letter learning activity was a lot like our DIY color glass gems.  They are so much fun for sorting, patterning, play on the DIY light box.  We used a similar manner to make these glitter letters. These large glass gems are great for play and learning.  We’ve written letters and shapes on them, and painted them, created art with them.

If you haven’t made your own DIY decoupage, this is one thing you need to try.  We use this stuff all the time.



Paint the flat side of the glass gems with decoupage.  Cover with glitter.


Shake off the excess glitter.  Coat with another layer of decoupage.


Stick on letter stickers and cover with another thin coat of decoupage.
Let those beauties dry.


When the letters were dry, we played letter memory, sounded out the sounds of the letters, and matched the letters.  This is a great way to play and learn letter identification, letter sounds, pre-reading, visual scanning skills, and more.


We haven’t tried putting the letter manipulatives on the light table yet, but I think they will look great!

More Ways to Use letter manipulatives



Work on letter formation, letter identification and handwriting skills with our Fine Motor Letter Kit! Perfect for hands-on letter learning.

Colleen Beck, OTR/L has been an occupational therapist since 2000, working in school-based, hand therapy, outpatient peds, EI, and SNF. Colleen created The OT Toolbox to inspire therapists, teachers, and parents with easy and fun tools to help children thrive. Read her story about going from an OT making $3/hour (after paying for kids’ childcare) to a full-time OT resource creator for millions of readers. Want to collaborate? Send an email to

letter manipulatives