single sense materials

Thermic Tablets



Material Description:

Material used to sensitise the hands

Pairs of tablets made with different substances which vary by their ability to conduct heat e.g. wood, felt, cork, glass, marble, slate and iron.  All the squares are alike in size and each pair is made of the same colour




Firstly, the hands are sensitised in the same manner that proceeds the Rough and Smooth Boards and touch tablets.




  • Bring the tray containing the items to two chowkis and place it on a cloth on the floor
  • Introduction – Contrasting Temperatures
  • Select a sharply cool tablet, the metal one and place it onto the chowki
  • Show the child how to feel the tablet placing your flat downturned palm gently over the tablets surface
  • Invite the child to do the same


  • Pairing
  • Place the first set into a group at random on the left
  • Remove the other set and place them at random into a group at the right of the chowki
  • Wear the blindfold
  • Bring a tablet from the left to the centre and touch it with the palm directly, as above
  • Bring one tablet from the right and touch it in the same way until it’s pair is found; if a tablet does not form a pair keep it at the base right corner until a pair is found and then bring the rejected tablets back into circulation
  • Check both tablets once more and invite the child to do the same
  • Put the pair at the far middle of the table
  • Continue to take tablets in the same manner until another pair is found
  • Put the bottles back into their two sets and mix them, invite the child to try





  1. The child pairs the tablets




The names of the substances may be given



Criteria of Perfection (Control of Error):

  • In the material itself, through colour, weight, texture and temperature



Direct Aim:

  • To refine the child’s awareness of temperature through the thermic sense




Age at Presentation:

Three and a half years, at the same time that the Thermic Bottles are shown.




  • The temperature is received throughout the palm
  • A variation on this exercise can be provided for the feet using a 12 cm2 square made of tile, cork, wood, slate, plastic, metal or marble
  • Encourage the child to walk on grass, sand, a path and other textures with bare feet, children in pairs can carefully lead each other when blindfolded.







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