All the lovely parents out there who are reading my blog, I hope you tried some activities I mentioned in my previous blog, to develop your child’s fine motor skills of the hand.
Today we shall continue with the same, but we’ll concentrate on developing the finger dexterity of the little ones. Before I share with you some activities to improve or develop the dexterity, let me share that it is the index finger which is usually most dexterous and sensitive finger of the hand. Now, how do we work on this?
Here are some activities you can easily do at home which will help your child.
- Finger painting– Bring out all the colors this summer and let your child unleash his creativity. Dip the finger in the paint and make cards, posters, decorate things and just play around. This activity is deeply loved by most of my students and can work wonders.
- Picking and Sorting– This is an easy one. Give your child a bowl with some assorted things and let them sort the things in separate bowls. If you’re doing this at home, use some pulses and rice and ask them to separate the two. Like I said in my previous post, if you involve your children in your household chores, you’re also teaching them to be helpful and responsible.
- Sand tracing– If you’re heading out to the beach this summer or if you have a sand pit near your house, let that be your child’s canvas.
- Tracing at home– Is it too hot to play in the sand? Well, provide your child with a large plate full of pulses, rice or some semolina. Let that be their canvas and they’ll have so much fun.
- Lego/ Blocks– Now this one is an absolute favorite of most children. Gift your child some blocks or lego to play with. Let them build their own buildings, animals and whatever they like. You will be surprised by their imagination and you can use these to teach them a thing or two about numeracy, colours, shapes, etc. This is a ‘ Must- Have’ for every child. Every time their little fingers plug or unplug each block, they are working on their finger dexterity.
- Plastic scissors- There are ‘child- friendly’ scissors available in the market which can be of great help. Initially, provide them with an old newspaper and allow them to cut as they like. This one really helps in improving the finger dexterity and the hand muscles. When you see some improvement in their skill, then give them a page with dotted lines that you’ve drawn and ask them to cut along the dotted lines. As their skill improves, move onto figures and create some collages or posters, etc.
- Tearing and pasting- This activity is extremely beneficial for the little ones. Every time they tear a paper, they are working on the hand muscles primarily and when they paste, they use a certain pressure of the fingers to do so. Give them some colourful paper and let them create something they like.
- Stringing– If you have beads/ straws and a thread at home, allow them to string the beads. This is a fantastic exercise for the fingers. If you wish, you could use ‘penne pasta’ or ‘macaroni’ at home and ask them to string the pasta instead. The way they hold the string, pick and put the bead in, will help in developing their dexterity as well as concentration.
- Holding the spoon– Firstly, encourage your child to eat his/ her food on their own. You can be around them to ensure they eat properly, but please let them hold the spoon, make their bite and eat. This will make them more independent, teach them table manners, help them understand about portions and eventually you won’t be worried if they ate in school or not. This is also extremely important for their fine motor and oral motor development.
- Colouring– Like I mentioned in my earlier posts too, start by giving them thicker crayons and let them color. The more they do this, the better dexterity and concentration they will build.
Apart from the activities mentioned above, you could involve your child in some household chores like I mentioned in my previous post. Take their help in putting the clothes in the washing machine and when you put them out for drying, let them put the pegs on them. Ask for their help in cleaning small things, putting some things, like pulses, in a jar( even if they use the spoon for it, it helps).
Give them jigsaws to play with. It works on the fine motor, concentration, reasoning and spatial skills.
Play some board games with your child. We all remember these from our childhood. Gift your child these memories too and simultaneously help them develop heir fine motor by playing with dice, cards, beads, etc. Use these to teach them about numeracy too. This could be a fun activity where the entire family comes together to play and create a thousand memories.
In my next blog, I will talk about developing the muscles of the wrists which are often ignored.