Fine Motor Skills: Activities for Little Hands
Without us really even thinking about it, we begin working on fine motor skills with our little ones. From the time they are babies, fine motor activities are naturally woven in to their day-to-day routines,
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and as my kids have gotten older, I have enjoyed providing them with even more opportunities to practice these skills.
For the homeschool preschool years, the letter mats from ABC Jesus Loves Me have been perfect for teaching letter recognition and more. *At one time, these mats were free, but it looks as if the setup on that particular website has changed.* I printed mine on heavy cardstock and laminated them, and we have used them over and over and over again. Shop my favorite laminator here.
Along with these mats, we have used a variety of objects to explore the shape of each letter…
…with rolling out and shaping play dough being a favorite for strengthening little hands.
In addition to rolling out and shaping play dough, one of my kids’ favorite fine motor activities is rolling it out and CUTTING IT! Yes, there have been many occasions when this simple activity has kept them busy for long periods of time.
Psst…I would suggest placing the play dough and scissors on some type of tray that will assist with keeping the mess contained. I love THESE from Ikea!
Plastic Child-Friendly Scissors by Crayola available here!
My kids have also enjoyed this cutting straws activity.
Fine Motor Skills…Hand-Eye Coordination…Concentration…practice with all of these things is also built in to this super fun and super colorful Cereal Stacking Activity.
Next up: Letter Stamping & Word Stamping!
Not only has this activity been fantastic for encouraging letter recognition, chatting about letter sounds, and creating new words but rolling out the play dough and using small stamps to create is also an excellent fine motor activity.
As you can see, play dough has come in handy for many of our favorite fine motor activities,
but I was recently introduced to Z-Dough – a homemade play dough that is made with natural scents. Honestly, play dough can drive me nuts sometimes…the mess…the smell…I don’t know, maybe I’m weird, but when Kira from Z Dough sent over personalized tins for each of my kiddos, I was immediately in love with the smooth texture and the yummy smells. She personalized the scents as well – How cool is that?
I love all of the amazing connections I’ve made through Instagram, and if you are not following along with Kira’s account, you must connect with her here! She has filled orders for all occasions – brides looking for something to keep the little ones in their wedding party busy, mamas looking for the perfect stocking stuffers, teachers interested in a more natural play dough option for their classroom – Go check it out!
For more fine motor activity ideas, take a peek at how we use kid-friendly tweezers and poms to develop fine motor skills with a variety of ideas that stretch across all subject areas.
Great ideas!! Fine motor is so important! I love that you’re doing a wide variety of different things to mix it up. One thing I would add to this list is coloring. It’s such a simple way to build those important fine motor muscles.
P.S. This is my new favorite blog! 🙂
I’m so glad we’ve connected, Heather! Looking forward to staying in touch!
I clicked on the link for the Play-Doh mats but I don’t see anywhere to download them.Are they still free?
I recently hopped over there, too, and it looks like the setup has changed in recent months! I definitely need to look into this and update the post! I’m so excited to connect with you, Lauren! Have you seen Bitty Beginnings? She has some GREAT alphabet options and runs a lot of fun specials in her Etsy shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/Bittybeginnings