Montessori Chinese Stroke Order Sandpaper Cards 汉字笔画砂纸板 (Printable)

A few years ago, I found these amazing Montessori Chinese stroke order sandpaper cards 蒙特梭利砂纸! In contrast to typical Chinese flashcards, these have dots that indicate stroke order.

They have been helpful for my daughter 老大 (lǎodà / oldest child) and my son 老二 (lǎo èr / second child) to learn important Chinese writing skills.

The downside is that these are often out of stock. However, the good news is that another mom and I have created printable Chinese stroke order rainbow dot flashcards that you can conveniently download!

Montessori Chinese Stroke Order Sandpaper Cards 蒙特梭利 汉字笔画砂纸板

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Teaching my kids Chinese stroke order

老大 started to write English & Korean letters independently by age 3, but her Chinese writing skills developed more gradually.

Like Chinese, the Korean Hangul alphabet should be written according to 笔画 (bǐhuà / stroke order).  But Chinese characters are much more complicated; most characters have numerous strokes.

From a young age, 老大 copied Chinese characters in her own way.  Initially, writing was low priority for our family. I didn’t want to impose strict rules at such a young age in fear that it would dampen her interest.

However, good writing habits must be established so that Chinese characters are legible, efficient, balanced, and beautiful.

Therefore, when 老大 was around age 4 years, we started reinforcing stroke order for Korean writing and it helped Chinese writing tremendously. 

On the other hand, I have been introducing stroke order to 老二 from the start. He often forgets, but how he has the foundation of years of practice that’s often needed for children to learn Chinese writing.

Review of Montessori Chinese Stroke Order Sandpaper Cards 蒙特梭利 汉字笔画砂纸板

Publisher: 蒙特梭利 SunYa Publications Hong Kong

Ages: 2-6 years

ISBN: 9789620868269

Lightweight Chinese flashcards

The 15cm x 15cm square-shaped cards are lightweight, thick cardboard with smooth, rounded corners.

I prefer this portable design over the traditional Montessori sandpaper cards which are heavy with sharp edges.

Montessori Chinese Sandpaper Cards 蒙特梭利 汉字笔画砂纸板 comes well packaged in a sturdy box.

Sandpaper texture aids learning

The black characters are a rough texture, but not as rough as traditional Montessori sandpaper boards.

A texturized surface stimulates the senses and helps children memorize Chinese characters in correct stroke order.

In my humble opinion, they seem adequately rough.

Black Kaiti font

I like that the Chinese stroke order cards feature the standard Chinese Kaiti font which shows the typical shape of brush strokes.

Black color font is also appreciated for consistency; too many flashcards are overly colorful and distracting.

Colored dots encourage independence

Colored dots indicate where the stroke begins and the order in which to proceed.

The first stroke is indicated by a red dot, followed by green, yellow, blue, and purple dots.

I think that the dots are a bit distracting for my 3-year-old 老二 who currently knows about ~200 Chinese characters.

However, they were perfect for 老大 to practice stroke order independently! At that time, she was 4-years-old and knew 600+ Chinese characters at the time

Which Chinese characters are included?

Twenty-four cards cover the following characters:

  • 8 basic Chinese strokes
  • 2 cards with 2-stroke characters:
    • 十 (shí / ten)
    • 人 (rén / person)
  • 4 cards with 3-stroke characters:
    • 女 (nǚ / woman)
    • 大 (dà / big)
    • 土 (tǔ / soil)
    • 口 (kǒu / mouth)
  • 7 cards with 4-stroke characters:
    • 手 (shǒu / hand)
    • 牛 (niú / cow)
    • 火 (huǒ / fire)
    • 水 (shuǐ / water)
    • 日 (rì / sun)
    • 木 (mù / wood)
    • 月 (yuè / moon)
  • 3 cards with 5-stroke characters:
    • 生 (shēng / birth),
    • 田 (tián / field),
    • 米 (mǐ / rice)

These characters are the same for simplified and traditional Chinese.

The cards have no Hanyu Pinyin or English.

I prefer no added text so that the cards are clean and relatively distraction-free.

Montessori Chinese Stroke Order Sandpaper Cards 蒙特梭利 汉字笔画砂纸板 Sun Ya Publishing

What I wish was different about these Chinese stroke order cards

  • More Chinese words – I would love to have a set of Montessori sandpaper cards with 100 common Chinese words. I think this would be more useful than the typical flashcard.
  • Normal Chinese characters with no dots – I think the dots are distracting for a child who is in the early stages of learning Chinese characters.  A plain Chinese character on the opposite side would be a helpful reference.
  • Dots in rainbow order – The dot colors are so random! The order would be easier to remember if they followed the rainbow!

The included characters are also random.

I’m not sure why 大 was included but not 小, which is only 3 strokes.

Pictures of the Chinese stroke order sandpaper cards 汉字笔画砂纸板

Montessori Chinese Stroke Order Sandpaper Cards 蒙特梭利 汉字笔画砂纸板 Sun Ya Publishing

Eight basic Chinese strokes

十 (shí / ten), 人 (rén / person) = 2 strokes per character

Montessori Chinese Stroke Order Sandpaper Cards 蒙特梭利 汉字笔画砂纸板 Sun Ya Publishing
Montessori Chinese Stroke Order Sandpaper Cards 蒙特梭利 汉字笔画砂纸板

女 (nǚ / woman), 大 (dà / big), 土 (tǔ / soil), 口 (kǒu / mouth) = 3 strokes per character

Montessori Chinese Stroke Order Sandpaper Cards 蒙特梭利 汉字笔画砂纸板 Sun Ya Publishing

手 (shǒu / hand),牛 (niú / cow),火 (huǒ / fire),水 (shuǐ / water),日 (rì / sun),木 (mù / wood),月 (yuè / moon) = 4 strokes per character

Montessori Chinese Stroke Order Sandpaper Cards 蒙特梭利 汉字笔画砂纸板 Sun Ya Publishing

生 (shēng / birth), 田 (tián / field) = 5 strokes each; 米 (mǐ / rice) = 6 strokes

Here is a video of the booklet that is included with the Montessori Chinese Sandpaper Cards 蒙特梭利 汉字笔画砂纸板.

How to present the stroke order cards

  1. Present each Chinese character through the Montessori 3-period lesson. Say the pronunciation and example phrases and sentences for context.
  2. Show your child the dots and how to trace each stroke according to the order indicated by the dots
  3. Let our child try!

Use the stroke order cards alone or in combination with a sensory writing tray!

Should you buy these Chinese stroke order sandpaper cards?

Overall, I think these Montessori Chinese stroke order sandpaper cards 蒙特梭利汉字笔画砂纸板 can be a helpful, hands-on resource for children learning to write Chinese!

However, you can easily DIY your own tactile character cards with glue or puffy paint to create a textured Chinese characters.

Then you can draw or add mini dot stickers to indicate stroke order. Consider whether this purchase or DIY would be best for your family!

You can also download our printables at the end of this post.

Where to buy Chinese sandpaper stroke order cards

Printable Chinese stroke order number cards with rainbow dots

If you’d like to save on cost, you can download printable Chinese stroke order cards below!

Chinese numbers stroke order flashcards

What you need

Download printable files

Chinese numbers: Pages 1-5 have dots indicating stroke order; pages 6-10 are normal Chinese numbers. Print double-sided so that kids can see normal character and stroke order prompts.

Do you have these Chinese stroke order cards?

If so, please share your experience in the comments below!

I’d love to know whether you found it to be helpful for your child and learn what other strategies you’ve used to teach Chinese stroke order!

Tips for teaching children Chinese

Please refer to these articles about how to teach Chinese characters:

Happy playful learning, friends!


  1. Oh no, TaoBao – I’m going to have to figure out how to order from them since I don’t know how to read well. If only their site had an english converter! Thank you for posting this review, I wish the set came with more cards!

  2. 你觉得我直接从网上买好还是叫我表妹在国内买好 然后再送来美国呢? 网上的shipping会不会太贵?

  3. These look awesome. I used the ISBN number you provided to find them on BaoPals since I can actually navigate that site myself. So excited.

  4. Thanks for the resources! This is great! Quick question – doesn’t 米 (mǐ / rice) have 6 strokes? Did I miss something?

    1. Hi Davina! Yes, 米 (mǐ / rice) has 6 strokes. Fixed the typo, thank you! And also wanted to let you know that another mom made a printable version of these cards! I’ve added the pdf towrad the end of the post for parents who aren’t able to get the sandpaper cards!

  5. Thank you for your site, it is very helpful. I’m a french girl ( I’m actually in France) who speaks Chinese and I would like to teach to my daughter chinese with the Montessori’s method. First I will print your greatful characters, but perhaps I will need to buy some of your products that you propose online. Unfortunetly you didn’t mention where to buy your products in Europe ? Could you help me ?

  6. Hi Betty!
    I keep coming back to your resources 🙂
    I was wondering, for the additional traditional characters printable, contributed by Jenny Aloha, is there any way either of you would be able to provide a word/excel type “template” to create additional character cards so that I can make a set in the same style? I’d love to be able to add some additional characters, and keep them similar in size, shape, style so it looks like a uniform set.
    Would appreciate any leads on this request! Thank you so much!

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