Fine motor skills involve using the small muscles in the hands and fingers. While some children develop fine motor skills naturally through daily play, some will need to adjust to daily activities with the intent to develop those muscles. Fine motor skill activities can be started at home and can be continued in a daycare or preschool program.
Children of all ages can be receptive if you want to teach fine motor skills. The fine motor skill activities appear more like fun than work! When you build fine motor skills activities into your everyday routine, you will see improvements in your child’s abilities and confidence. There are many fine motor skills activities that can be done using items you already have at home.
5 Activities You Can Do at Home to Develop Fine Motor Skills
- Peel and place stickers
- Put coins in a piggy bank
- Squeeze Playdoh
- Playing with LEGO sets
- Make something with dough
Peeling and placing stickers require visual motor coordination.
Place stickers on your child’s hands or clothing and let them peel off each sticker. This fine motor skill activity develops the pincer grasp, which can help with activities like manipulating a button. Ask them to place the stickers in pre-drawn circles on a piece of paper. This extra level of coordination helps with tasks such as getting a button in the hole.
Teach fine motor skills by putting coins in a piggy bank.
The pincer grasp, along with visual motor coordination, is further developed by picking up coins and placing them in the piggy bank slot. Increase the challenge to include sorting and stacking the coins. This will teach the fine motor skills of precision grasp and visual perception. These skills translate to identifying and placing tops on toothpaste or bottles of water.
Playdoh is a colorful way to teach fine motor skills.
Playdoh is most likely already in your home and is excellent for fine motor skills activities. The consistency of Playdoh helps in developing hand and finger stretch. Have your child squeeze the Playdoh into different shapes and use their fingertips to sculpt. For an additional challenge, place coins or beads in the Playdoh for them to find and remove.
Make use of the tiny toy you step on in the middle of the night.
LEGO are useful for more than causing a complete meltdown when stepped on. If you want to continue to teach fine motor skills to a school-age child, LEGO bricks are an ideal way to have fun and complete a fine motor skills activity! The pincer grasp is developed, and visual acuity skills are strengthened to grasp and place the LEGO appropriately.
Get in the kitchen and spend time together.
When you cook together, you can share time with your child in a fun and meaningful way and teach fine motor skills at the same time. Develop visual coordination from measuring ingredients, strengthen the pincer grasp with utensils, and work on hand and finger stretch when kneading dough. Each of these fine motor skills activities can be done when making dough for pizza, bread, or cookies – and enjoyed after being cooked!
Not sure about ideas to increase your child’s fine motor skills at home? Our top priority is the development and success of your little learner. At The Breakie Bunch Learning Center, we have plenty of ideas for your developing child and can share activities you can do at home with them.