How to make blank toddler board books

My grandson loves board books and I love blank books so I thought I would combine the two and create my own toddler blank board books…

In the past, I have always purchased store bought blank books for my preschool students to use in the classroom but they are made with paper and wouldn’t work well for my grandson. So I decided to try making a few different kinds of blank board books for my grandson to explore.

In my preschool classroom, the blank books are used primarily for journal writing and for our word wall journals. Since my grandson is a toddler, we wont be using the blank board books for writing. Instead, I will be adding different objects or photos or pictures to the board books based upon whatever I find around the house or what I think my grandson will enjoy exploring…

The cardboard to make each board book is from Staples Office Supply and is actually called “Illustration Board.”  Illustration board is a little thicker and sturdier than poster board but not too thick or easy to puncture like foam board.  I cut each piece of illustration board into rectangles that measure approximately 4″ x 6″…

I made two different types of blank board books.  The first type is just a simple open-and-close book with two of the cardboard rectangle pieces attached together with a strip of duct tape…

To make the open-close board books, set two rectangle pieces of cardboard short end to short end on top of a wide piece of duct tape. Leave a small gap between the cardboard pieces so they will open and close completely.  Wrap the duct tape around the two pieces and press the tape down firmly on both sides of the book….

You can also wrap the edges of the board book in duct tape if you wish.  I decided to wrap the edges of some of my books and may decide to wrap them all but like I said, this is a work in progress….

The second type of toddler blank board book I made is called a “Turn-Around Board Book.”  That is the name I gave it because it doesn’t actually have a beginning and an end – it just keeps going around and around and it sits up nicely on a table or on the floor…

The turn-around board books are just a few more steps then the open-close books.  You still start with two pieces just as I have explained above but then you keep adding one more piece of cardboard at a time until you have the number of pages you would like in your turn-around board book. The turn-around books take longer to make and you can’t wrap the duct tape around each piece you have to actually tape each side one at a time.  And if you put the edges of the boards close together, they will not close flat. If you leave a small gap in between each board, they will close flat.  I tried it both ways and as you can see in the photo below, this could simply be an open-close book with more than just two pages but I chose to keep it as a turn around book for now…

My grandson did run around a bit with the blank books but at the time, I hadn’t added anything to the pages yet.  I will soon share with you my completed Toddler Board Books and I think you will be surprised at what I decided to do to make them interactive and interesting.  Of course, I still need to see if my grandson likes them as much as I do!

Available on Amazon

Links to Grow on

Texture Word Books from Book Bloesem Kids

A Kids Activity Book DIY from The Gold Jelly Bean

Ziploc “My Body Book” from I Can Teach My Child

Make Your Own Twig Book from The Handmade Ventures of Captain Crafty

DIY Board Books from Naptime Crafters

By |2012-07-01T07:00:04+00:00July 1st, 2012|

About the Author:

Deborah J. Stewart, M.Ed. has been working and teaching in the field of early childhood education for over 30 years. Deborah currently owns and teaches in her own part-time, private preschool called The Children’s Studio. Deborah’s deep passion for teaching and working with young children is documented and then graciously shared with millions of readers around the world through her blog and other social networking communities. Deborah believes that young children learn best through play and exploration and embraces this belief in all that she does in her own classroom so that she can effectively and passionately share rewarding, real- life, tried-and-true practices with other teachers, parents, and leaders across the field of early childhood education.


  1. Susan Case July 1, 2012 at 7:47 am - Reply

    So cute. And I loved the paper towel rolls. What a lucky grandson!

  2. Magali July 1, 2012 at 12:41 pm - Reply

    This is a great little tutorial that should save a little money.

  3. crystal@growingajeweledrose July 1, 2012 at 2:38 pm - Reply

    These are so neat! I am definitely going to make a few for my girls. What a great way to tap into the imagination. These will certainly facilitate story telling.

  4. Teacher's Land July 1, 2012 at 3:54 pm - Reply

    What a great idea! Please add your site to my linky! @ now that I have found you I will be visiting often!

  5. Ali July 2, 2012 at 7:47 am - Reply

    I am looking forward to seeing what you are going to add to your board books. Great idea.

  6. Margaret@GrowingPlay July 2, 2012 at 10:57 am - Reply

    Do you think it would work with laminated pages then it could be a wipe on/off book as well? My toddler loves to use wipe off crayons on the white board.

  7. Montessori Motherload July 3, 2012 at 8:54 am - Reply

    Great site! This is a great idea that I will definitely use with my daughter. I like Margaret’s idea with the laminated pages as well. 🙂

  8. Ettamarie July 6, 2012 at 10:42 am - Reply

    Great idea. I will be teaching a mixed age group of early ones and twos. I am spending this month developong curriculum. I would love to use the board book for our language development portion of our curriculum.

  9. Nawara July 9, 2012 at 10:09 am - Reply

    I love that and I like to be friend in this web. Thanks

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