Many people think that learning to write is something that occurs only in the early grades as children begin to learn to write numbers and letters and put them into words. But writing is so much more than this.
Learning to write begins when children are very young and start using the muscles in their fingers that they’ll need to write later on. Toys and activities that encourage these fine motor skills are invaluable when more formal writing instruction begins.
Development of fine motor skills should continue well after children learn to write. Continued fine motor activities help children learn to have better handwriting and prepares their fingers to manage a keyboard fluently and quickly.
The best way to help your child develop fine motor skills, regardless of their age, is through play. There are so many games, toys, and activities available to your child that are fun and build those all important fine motor skills.
Anything that requires your child to use his or her fingers in small or specific movements will help your child become a more proficient writer.
ENCOURAGING FINE MOTOR SKILLS IN MY CHILD:
Get a variety of small craft supplies from the dollar store. Think creatively. Imagine what can be done with a sink mat & shoe laces.
Get an assortment of buttons of different colors and sizes and some glue. Then let your child create their own artistic creation.
Blow bubbles! Using 2 fingers to load up the plastic ring is great practice. Older kids can do this for younger ones for them to practice.
Get some tweezers and your child’s favorite small treat (e.g., Skittles, M&Ms). Have a contest to see who can move the most from one plate to another using only tweezers.
Build a house of cards.