Signs of Poor Fine Motor / Fine Motor Delay
Children develop so many different skills and abilities as they grow. One of the most essential of these is Fine Motor Skills. These are the skills that are required by children to make small movements such as grasping a pencil with their fingers or making movements with their lips, wrists, feet and more. Fine motor skills involve the use of the smaller muscle of the hands, commonly in activities such as using scissors, opening a lunchbox and doing up buttons. You can read more about Fine Motor Skills here
As Fine Motor Skills develop naturally, every child develops them at their own pace and this time can varies with each child. Your child’s doctor will start checking these skills from an early age – as early as 2 months – and continue to check when you visit for an appointment. Fine Motor Skills develop steadily until ages 3 and 4.
Signs of Fine Motor Delay
– a child may appear to be clumsy
– not being able to grasp onto objects
– they might have trouble performing tasks that require hand-eye coordination
– not being able to use utensils when eating meals
– avoidance or disinterest in table activities which includes writing, drawing and colouring
– waiting for parents to dress them and brush their teeth instead of doing it themselves
– tendency to drop items
Things that might help
– try to set aside time each day to incorporate fine motor skills into a daily routine and make it enjoyable for your child so they are encouraged to do the activity. Try things like kneading Play-Doh, spray painting using spray bottles and mixing cookie dough with spoons.
– to aid in the development of writing skills, parents can set up an easel with markers and crayons, since writing vertically has been shown to build the muscles necessary for fine motor skills more efficiently than writing on a flat surface.
Here are some more ideas from Brain Balance that we found useful.