• Activities for Developing Fine Motor Coordination

      Dear Parents:
      These are some activities to strengthen small hand muscles.  Please keep these activities fun and integrate them into your daily routine.

      • Pick up small objects such as coins, beans, marbles, seeds, buttons, nuts and bolts.  Sort them into containers of varying sizes.
      • Pick up objects (blocks, cotton balls, pom-poms, crumpled balls of paper, counters, etc.) using various-sized tongs, tweezers or clothesline hooks.
      • Learn to fingerspell the ABC’s using American Sign Language.
      • Stack objects (coins, cards, checkers, blocks, etc.).
      • Screw and unscrew objects such as nuts and bolts, caps from jars, etc.
      • String beads onto a shoelace.
      • Play with Lite Brite toy.
      • Cut straight and curved lines/shapes drawn on paper, cloth, etc., with scissors.
      • Play the piano; do fingerplays.
      • Type or keyboard.
      • Crumple paper into a small ball and then flick it with the finger (play “soccer” with the paper ball).
      • Shuffle cards, deal cards one by one, turn cards over.
      • Roll a pencil between thumb and fingers without dropping it.
      • Stick small objects into playdough or silly putty for him or her to pull out.
      • Wind thread on a spool evenly.
      • Put rubber bands around various-sized containers and objects.
      • Move spoonfuls of small objects from one bowl to another.
      • Do up buttons, zippers, hooks, etc.
      • Tie shoelaces.
      • Manually sharpen pencils.
      • Put keys into locks to open doors.
      • Put paper clips onto paper.
      • Place clothespins on the edge of a box or container or on a line.
      • Use Wikki Stix to form shapes, letters, numbers, and other designs.
      • Color using the flat side of a crayon. Put paper over leaves, stencils, and other objects so that the child gets sensory feedback as he colors.
      • Use sprayer bottles filled with water and sponges to have the child “clean” a desk or table, then squeeze the excess water into a dishpan.  This is a great pre-scissor skill activity.
      • Lace various-sized beads. Using both hands develops bilateral integration.
      • Play with dough using words like poke, squeeze, pound, press, and knead.
      • Use puzzles with pegs.
      • Wave using the “pincer” grasp (two fingers and a thumb).

      From Parents as Partners in Kindergarten and Early Literacy: Multiplying our Teaching Effectiveness, by Nellie Edge ©2007