Fine motor skills involve using small muscles in the hands and wrists to make movements such as pinching and grasping items to perform certain tasks. This includes activities like drawing or colouring with a pencil or crayon, using scissors to cut paper or cardboard, or painting using a paint brush. It takes a while for children to grasp fine motor development there is a lot you can do as a parent to help, as explored by this day nursery in Worthing.
Doing activities like putting a puzzle together or playing games involving picking up small items helps develop children’s fine motor skills. Moving small puzzle pieces around involves using a pincer grasp with the forefinger and thumb, as does using tweezers or something similar to pick up objects. These tasks will also enhance your child’s hand-eye coordination as they look at items and move them where they want them to go.
Encouraging your child to draw, paint, colour in or make a collage is another good way to strengthen fine motor skills. They can use scissors to cut things out and glue to stick them onto some paper or card, and when painting or drawing they’ll learn to grip a pencil or paintbrush and use the small muscles in their hands and wrists to make controlled markings with them.
Get your child involved in daily gardening activities such as planting seeds or watering plants. Using a trowel to dig up soil requires the use of small wrist muscles, as does using a watering can. Children can also develop a pincer grasp through picking up seeds or bulbs and planting them in the ground. They’ll probably have loads of fun in the process while learning about the natural world.
Stacking blocks on top of each other to build a tower or putting lego pieces together also strengthens fine motor skills. Children learn to pick up and place small pieces, making sure not to knock them over, to create something. This enhances their dexterity and hand-eye coordination while giving them the opportunity to be creative and use their imagination.
Ask your child to help you with cooking or baking and let them use lots of different utensils. This will introduce them to a variety of movements while they help you weigh and measure ingredients and prepare them for cooking.
All these activities will help enhance your child’s fine motor skills while giving them something fun to do. If you have any tips on fine motor development we’d love to hear them.