DRAFTSMAN Tactile Drawing Board

Create instant tactile drawings easily!

Versatile tactile drawing board that is used in combination with special film and a stylus to create instant raised-line drawings. DRAFTSMAN drawing board is intended for a wide audience, such as visually impaired students, teachers, parents, and adults.


Use for

  • Producing simple raised-line graphics
  • Demonstrating math concepts and tasks
  • Demonstrating science concepts
  • Practicing handwriting skills
  • Playing games (e.g., tic-tac-toe)
  • Facilitating tracing activities
  • Creating art drawings


This board has a plastic frame that encases a double-layered rubber surface. Clamp a sheet of included drawing film onto the board and use the included stylus or a ballpoint pen to quickly draw a raised image.


  • DRAFTSMAN Tactile Drawing Board
  • Two-ended tactile drawing stylus
  • Tactile inch-ruler
  • 25 sheets of drawing film (also available separately)
  • Braille/print instruction book
  • Carrying case

Video: Watch this user-made video on YouTube entitled Math Sketches with Braille, demonstrating one of the many uses of APH's DRAFTSMAN.

>>Additional product information below


DRAFTSMAN Tactile Drawing Board Format: Product
Catalog Number: 1-08857-00

Price: $229.00

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Additional Information:


Why I Love the DRAFTSMAN Tactile Drawing Board from APH
Article excerpt from the field, by Kristie Smith, M.Ed, CTVI
Originally published in the Fred's Head From APH Blog

“Vision is the art of seeing things invisible” -- Jonathan Swift

One of my favorite items from APH is the amazing DRAFTSMAN Tactile Drawing Board. Upon opening the box one will find a green square-shaped object similar to a clipboard with a smooth interior as well as a stylus. Included with the kit is a package of special plastic sheets. Though unassuming, the DRAFTSMAN has a lot to offer.

Creating raised-line images is a snap. Simply place one of the plastic sheets between the clamps and begin drawing with the included stylus. Applying pressure as you draw with the stylus instantly creates a raised line on the plastic sheet. Fellow teachers and I have been brainstorming on different ways to get the most out of the DRAFTSMAN.

Recently I was giving the TAKS exam to one of my students and the graphics involved were extremely detailed. “I do not understand the graph,” he told me, so I picked up the DRAFTSMAN and quickly illustrated and described the details necessary to answer the question. His response was quite gratifying. “Oh, I get it now,” he said smiling. My heart melted as we worked through subsequent problems in the same manner.

Though simple, this small kit makes a huge difference in the lives of our children who are blind or have visual impairments. Listed below are some of the many activities that this kit makes possible.

Math Ideas
  • Teachers can illustrate, simplify, or enlarge graphs, shapes, and equations so that the child understands the meaning behind the words being said.
  • The kit works wonders for teaching younger students the symbolism behind raised-line shapes and the real objects they represent.
  • The DRAFTSMAN is a superb instructional aid for counting and money skills. By drawing large, medium, and small raised-line circles on the DRAFTSMAN, the concepts of amounts and values were made less abstract to my students. This method, combined with using and counting actual coins, augments the learning process and is far more effective than merely counting coins alone.
  • The student can learn about colors from using scents, tastes, and experiences, so I illustrate objects that share those colors. For example, yellow represents: bananas, lemons, and a happy experience, so I illustrate different objects that are that color. To make it even more real, I add the smells to the objects by simply rubbing the food on the plastic sheets.
Reading Ideas
  • Before reading a story, build the background using the DRAFTSMAN. Illustrate characters, setting, and plot with diagrams and illustrations.
  • Enhance vocabulary skills through raised-line illustrations with corresponding definitions and descriptions.
  • Illustrate the mood of characters in a story by using drawings of smiley or frowning faces.
  • Braille dot formations and large, raised letters can be taught together on the plastic sheets.
  • When teaching the association between letter sounds and printed letters, draw or have the child make pictures of objects that represent those sounds.
Science Ideas
  • Illustrate cause/effect ideas through drawing chemicals, formulas, the periodic table, or other concepts that teach chemistry.
  • Draw out scientific procedures or cycles on the plastic sheet.
  • Explain energy forms or transference through simple drawings and diagrams.
Writing Ideas
  • Children who are blind or who have low vision will benefit from feeling of the printed letters as they are written and seen by sighted children because in life they will be asked to sign their signature many times.
  • Ask the child to practice printed letter writing on the plastic sheets.
  • Have the student draw their own story while including characters, setting, and plot before they braille their ideas.

The DRAFTSMAN can be used for both concrete and creative skills. The value of the DRAFTSMAN brings to mind a beautiful quote from St. Augustine, “The words printed here are concepts. You must go through the experiences.”

Do you have some great ideas about using APH products? We encourage you to submit an article to the Fred's Head from APH blog. Contact Marissa Stalvey, APH's Social Media Coordinator, mstalvey@aph.org