What are Fine Motor Skills?
Fine motor is the ability to control small movements to manipulate small toys and tools such as crayons and scissors. Fine motor skills require control over smaller muscles in the fingers, toes, eyes, wrists and ankles.
Why Are Fine Motor Skills Important?
These fine motor skills, especially eye-hand coordination, are essential for school readiness (Brack, 2004). These skills are used in actions such as drawing, writing, grasping objects, waving and turning book pages. They are also linked to early reading and literacy achievement (Reno, 1995).
How Do Children Learn Fine Motor Skills Over Time?
Infants reach for objects and use arms or legs to make contact with an object.
Toddlers purposefully grasp objects with finger and thumb and use hands to accomplish simple tasks such as feeding themselves. They open, close, twist and pull objects with one or both hands.
Preschoolers manipulate objects with their hands, snip with scissors and begin to string large beads. They begin to button, zip, buckle and lace.
Primary schoolers thread small beads, stack small objects and use scissors to cut more challenging materials such as fabric and cardstock. They grasp and stack objects of all sizes with speed and accuracy.
Our integrated curriculum system uniquely weaves 35 research-based skills into playful games and discovery projects. The cross-disciplinary model supports a child’s on-going social-emotional, physical, language and cognitive development. See what children learn through play and download the Developmental Continuum of Skills.