Friday, June 11, 2010

Fine Motor Activities for Young Children

Are you wondering about how to maintain your young child's fine motor skills during the summer? Are you concerned about your child's fine motor skills and want to work with them over the summer to get them "caught up"?

The following ideas are things I do with my youngest or plan to do with her this summer .

  1. Write letters in a bowl of flour (or sugar, salt, etc)
  2. Do dot-to-dot pictures
  3. Cut shapes, pictures out of a magazine in a specific shape or outline of the object.
  4. Roll playdoh into little balls using both the palm of her hands and then only the tips of her fingers
  5. Transfer cotton balls from one bowl (or ice cube tray) to another using tweezers or kid chopsticks
  6. Handwriting sheets found online or at discount stores (dollar stores, etc). Be careful to look through the font style though, some sheets use the wrong script of letters like "a". Kids don't learn a's like this.
  7. Sidewalk chalk writing
  8. Write on whiteboards
  9. Finger painting

Self-care lessons also increase fine motor skills in preschool and young elementary school children. 

  1. Tying shoe laces
  2. Buttoning shirts
  3. Snapping pants
  4. Zipping jackets
  5. Washing dishes (plastic is best at this age) :)
  6. Vacuuming
  7. Sweeping
  8. Using hand tools (screwdriver, hammer, wrench)
  9. Locking/unlocking doors
  10. Cooking (stirring, rolling out dough, using measuring cups, cutting with a blunt knife)
  11. Bathing
  12. Dressing
  13. Opening jars and bottles

No matter what you do to help your child improve their fine motor activities this summer, remember one thing! KEEP IT FUN! This isn't calculus and they will have plenty of fine motor skills by the time they leave for college so do not stress about it now. Enjoy your kids and have fun. They will never know they are learning.

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