Developing Your Child's Motor Skills
Today we're sharing some ideas and resources for helping develop your child's motor skills. We've linked to some of the products we carry but you may be able to find similar products elsewhere if you need more options.
It may also be helpful to know that if you're seeing a pattern of extra struggle around motor skills (walking/talking/climbing/eating...) compared to same-aged peers, it may be worth an occupational therapy evaluation. A few of our little ones have had apraxia and/or low muscle tone and we have found that very helpful to know. Of course, getting skilled professionals on our team has made a huge difference too - we've seen a lot of delays shrink away with proper intervention, and once we knew how to coach them better!
Fine Motor Skills
If your child enjoys workbook type activities:
- sticker books (Kumon and Usborne are big hits here)
- sticker by number (a huge hit with our crew)
- dot-to-dot books
Other fantastic resources:
- sensory bins (Our 2-year-old loves his tray of sand and rocks and construction vehicles!)
- play dough
- writing in sand/rice/flour
- tools your child may have missed from the Preschool kit
- art of any type - watercolor, finger paint, do-a-dot, art kits
- lacing or threading
- water play (adding color tablets can keep kids mixing and pouring for hours)
- tweezer work
- STEM kits - this can be as formal as Plus-Plus, ThinkPlay Preschool or GeoSmart Education Set, or as informal as setting aside time specifically for building with whatever your child's favorite construction toys are already
- water beads lend themselves to all kinds of fine motor fun - do beware of the potential safety issues, but properly supervised they're a blast!
Gross Motor Skills
- free play outdoor time is huge
- walks or hikes
- playground equipment (whether at home or at a local park or school)
- mini trampoline
- Physio Roll
If you do an internet search for fine or gross motor skills ideas, you'll see literally hundreds of fun ideas out there, but hopefully, this list at least gets you started.