Fine Motor Skills Gone Missing?

More and more young children are turning up at preschool without the fine motor skills to use scissors or hold a pencil to write. Experts are divided about the reasons why but in a child's early years, there is much we can do before they start school to help strengthen fine motor skills. 

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Developing Fine Motor Skills in Preschoolers - learn about 2D shapes while building fine motor strength and control. Free printable with all the basic 2D shapes ready to use | you clever monkey
Most young children learn by doing, not just by being told. Play is a child learning but in our busy world many children are being moved from organised activity to activity. Some are given with little time for free play yet the first three years are when a child's core muscle control and strength develop. If these fine motor skills are under developed when they reach preschool age, educators have to provide more hands-on activities for children with a mix of both fine and gross motor skills built which allow young children to develop this control and strength whilst learning.

There are many such activities that allow preschoolers to build their fine motor skills - manipulating playdough, threading objects, getting dressed or wearing dressups with buttons and zips that need doing up, using Pop Beads, squeezing small glue bottles, using pegs, colouring in or painting between lines, using scissors, tearing paper, using tweezers or tongs to pick up objects, picking up marbles, using stickers, pulling objects off sticky paper, bending pipe cleaners or making wire sculptures, sewing, painting with cotton buds, stretching rubber or loom bands, using LEGO, tightening nuts on bolts.

Developing Fine Motor Skills in Preschoolers - learn about 2D shapes while building fine motor strength and control. Free printable with all the basic 2D shapes ready to use | you clever monkey

One of my favourite tools to develop fine motor skills are push pins. Using pins provide children with a fantastic opportunity to use their pincer grip and develop their hand-eye co-ordination as well as build finger strength. Of course as with anything, supervision is key and with some cohorts, you may decide the risk of using sharp objects to great to use this idea with your students.

Developing Fine Motor Skills in Preschoolers - learn about 2D shapes while building fine motor strength and control. Free printable with all the basic 2D shapes ready to use | you clever monkey

I like activities that have more than one focus. I created these shape shifting printables for children to build their fine motor skills while learning about 2D shapes and their attributes. I've also thrown in a little magic which will hook most children into persisting with pinning their shape until they are complete.


Developing Fine Motor Skills in Preschoolers - learn about 2D shapes while building fine motor strength and control. Free printable with all the basic 2D shapes ready to use | you clever monkey

On finishing, simply turn the paper over and display on an external window to reveal the secret writing! You can download our printable 2D shape shifting templates for free.




Developing Fine Motor Skills in Preschoolers - learn about 2D shapes while building fine motor strength and control. Free printable with all the basic 2D shapes ready to use | you clever monkey
If you work in an Early Childhood setting I highly recommend these two books. I have both ebooks on my iPad and use them frequently for inspiration.








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