Posts Tagged ‘Fine Motor Skills’

10 activities to improve your child’s fine motor skills

10 activities to improve your child’s fine motor skills

10 activities to improve your child’s fine motor skills

Motor skills form a vital aspect of life. They are constantly utilised throughout the course of each and every day. Whether we’re picking up our breakfast in the morning, grasping a pencil at our desk, or buttoning up a shirt, these activities all require what we call “fine motor skills”. As adults, often we don’t think twice about performing these simple tasks, because they’ve been ingrained in us from a young age, and just form part of our daily lives.

It’s a different case for children though, as they need to learn and develop these skills over time, slowly becoming more confident with the repetition of each new activity. Children will develop fine motor skills gradually, at different ages and stages. For example, babies typically start to grasp objects with their hands between 5 and 6 months of age and will start playing with hand-held toys between 6 and 12 months old.

Our children will develop their fine motor skills naturally over time.

Around 18 months old, most toddlers will attempt more complex skills such as using a pencil or drinking from their bottle without assistance. By 24 months old, your toddler might even show a preference for using their left or right hand. Impressive, right?

Beyond their second birthday, toddlers’ fine motor skills start to become more refined. You will probably notice they may show an interest in drawing and attempting to handwrite!

While these skills will begin to develop naturally, there are lots of fun activities you can do with your child at home to support the development of their fine motor skills.

10 fun activities to improve your child’s motor skills:

  1. Play dough: Moulding, shaping, crafting. This also promotes sensory development
  2. Drawing, colouring, painting: Time-honoured favourites! These activities allow children to gain greater control with their hands, while using their imagination to create a work of art which can take pride of place on your fridge!
  3. Cutting with scissors: A great way to strengthen fine motor skills as well as improve hand-eye coordination
  4. Bath time and water play: Never gets old! Provide cups for your child to scoop and pour out water. It’s loads of fun for them and not too messy for you!
  5. Sand Play: Scooping and digging with buckets and spoons; encourages sensory development as well
  6. Building with Lego and blocks: Stacking, connecting, and creating things with Lego and blocks. Encourages fine pushing and pulling movements and offers endless imagination!
  7. Puzzles: Provides mental stimulation, teaches patience, and encourages usage of both hands
  8. Using plastic cutlery: Allowing children to begin picking up their own food, the start of developing independence
  9. Threading or lacing: Start teaching your child how to tie their shoes or creating knots in general. Fostering more independence and will eventually become a great time saver when everyone is getting ready in the mornings!
  10. Brushing their own teeth: Now this one may not be terribly effective at first! Once you’ve done the “serious” brushing, hand over the toothbrush to your little person encouraging them to finish off by moving the brush around all the surfaces of their teeth. This will help their fine motor development as well as establishing the crucial life skill of looking after their precious teeth!

Pretty simple, right? These everyday activities can all be done at home, and don’t require any expensive equipment. Give them a try with your child and see how eager they are to have a go! Children are quick learners. Before you know it, they will be sipping from their water bottle all by themselves.

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