Here are 3 simple activities to help your child improve her fine motor skills. Fine motor skills develop muscles that allow her to draw, print, color, and successfully complete other physical activities. These games can be done indoors or outdoors.
For 3-5-year-olds: The Balloon Toss
You will need 2-3 round or oval balloons (inflated), with each approximately 6-8” in diameter. For 1 or more players.
- Have your child toss one balloon in the air. The object of the game is to keep the balloon from touching the ground. He can use hands, head, elbows, knees, etc. to keep the balloon in the air.
- Say the alphabet, or count together to see how often he touches the balloon before it comes down.
- When he has mastered one balloon, increase the difficulty by challenging him to keep two afloat. After the game is over, be sure to deflate and properly dispose of the balloons for safety reasons.
For 6-7-year-olds: The Clothespin Challenge
You will need 6 pinch-type clothespins and an 8-9” paper or plastic plate for each of up to 6 players. For 1-6 players.
- Put the plate on the ground, about 10 feet away from your child.
- Call “ready, set, go,” and then have her run to the plate, pick it up, and attach each of her clothespins around the plate.
- When all of her clothespins are attached she should run back to you with the plate. If she is the only player, time how long it took her to do the job. Then, see if she can beat her own time.
- If there is more than one player, the first to complete the task wins.
- To increase the difficulty, gradually increase the number of clothespins to a maximum of 10 or 12.
For 8-9-year-olds: The Lego Challenge
You will need a set of Legos and a timer. For 1 or more players.
- Find a simple picture of a Lego design, either from the box or from one of your child’s favorite Lego designs.
- Challenge your child to build the structure before the timer rings.
- Set timer to 15 minutes and start it. Time how long it takes your child to complete the design.
- If there is more than one player, the first to complete the task wins
- To increase the difficulty, decrease the time by 2-minute intervals.
Summer is a great time to hone fine motor skills by doing fun activities!