Sourced from:Create hands-on learning manipulatives to enhance basic skills- by Donna R. Sanderson


Making a classroom CAPS Kit

CAPS Kits offer unlimited possibilities as sustainable, hands-on, and authentic learning tools.

Students will benefit from the engaging and play based activities that can be created using bottle caps.

Ask families to help you gather plastic caps from   milk or water bottles. But feel free to build your collection slowly, marking the caps with letters, numerals, or symbols as children’s interests and skills dictate.

Here’s what you need:

■ 128 plastic bottle caps

■ white stickers, one for each cap

■ CD  marker PEN

■ 2 storage bins, one for each set

1. Wash the caps and allow to air dry.

2. Use a permanent marker to write on the stickers,

as described here.

For the alphabet set, you’ll need three caps for each of these frequently used letters: E, T, A, O, I, N,

S, H, R, D, L, and U. Draw one capital letter and two lowercase letters for each. For the less frequently

used letters C, M, W, F, G, Y, P, B, V, K, X, J, Q, and Z draw one capital and one lowercase for each.

For the math set, you’ll need three caps for each of these numerals 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 0. Use

two caps for each of these symbols: + (plus), (minus), = (equal), < (less than), > (greater than),

(less than or equal), and ≥ (greater than or equal). 3. Affix one sticker to each bottle cap. Leave 20 bottle

caps blank to make more letters or numbers as needed.

4. Place the alphabet set in one bin and the number set in the other.
Variations in color:
You can request that parents collect only the transparent caps that come on water

bottles, or only the red caps from milk bottles, for example. For preschoolers, you might request red

caps for the alphabet set and yellow caps for the number set. Collect extra caps of the same color that

will stay blank until used at your discretion.



  1. geetha ( PowerPoint Presentation about TLMs)
  2. TLM GUIDELINES ( A word  doc illustrated  guideline for making various kinds of TLMs)
  3. low cost no cost ( an excellent  pdf resource for making TLMs for all subjects)
  4. TL-foldables!!!  ( a great pdf resource for making TLM graphic organizers easily)
  5. 24 / 7/ 13  ten little fingers ( TLM And Craft ideas from Arvind Gupta)
  1. A sample TLM for a story with puppets

TLM IDEAS FOR  LANGUAGE LEARNING(Click to reach the web page)




  1. Sutradhar, a NGO  in Indiranagar in Bangalore has an impressive collection of child friendly, hand crafted TLM kits . The collection of puppets is truly amazing. These products can be  maintained and used for 2-5 years.The website links are given below for information about their products and services:
  2. For a preview of their products visit
  3. Details of catalogue
  4. Training in TLM preparation and workshops



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