Motor skills start developing from very early in life and play a huge role in many critical activities that children engage in during their life. The world around our kids is changing rapidly but do you know that the world inside them is changing at the same speed? That little brain is developing at a stupendous pace. Along with doing their regular tasks such as sleeping, eating, playing, etc, they are also noticing the amazing things around them. Being new to emotions, they are experiencing and expressing them too.
The journey is indeed an amazing one. Soon, they will start grasping objects, which starts with holding a parent’s finger to the blankie or even a toy in their cot. Gradually they start reaching out for things and before we even realise it, they start opening their fingers, wiggling them and exploring different things by way of touching, lifting, squeezing and breaking.
Advantages of developing motor skills in kids
● Holding, moving, grasping and picking up objects
You may be thinking that anyone can do this, right? As we do all these activities without paying too much attention to them. Although, if we work towards strengthening them in the early years, we can perform much better with related activities that require the use of hands and fingers. For instance, writing, painting, drawing, using scissors, gardening, cooking, carpentry, and a lot more.
● Hand-eye coordination
Motor skills play a huge role in establishing and enhancing our hand-eye coordination. Without these skills, we won’t be able to perform activities such as driving a car, washing things, drinking from a cup or simply reaching out for an object.
● Independence early in life
What may be the reason behind some children becoming more independent than others? Some begin bathing and clothing themselves much before their peers. It’s because of better fine motor skills. This is also related to confidence and self-esteem.
So, is it possible to develop fine motor skills? The answer is yes. There are many activities that you, as parents can do and help strengthen these skills in your kid.
Importance of early childhood education in learning motor skills
The importance of early years education is immense with a plethora of benefits like better social skills, better coordination, creativity and increased confidence levels.
Early childhood education programs help develop motor skills among children that build the foundation for necessary future skills. Several activities are performed by toddlers in early childhood programs that help them develop these skills. They learn how to feed themselves, grasp objects, accomplish self-care and perform everyday tasks.
Activities for developing motor skills in children
Different kids develop fine motor skills at different rates. When struggling with performing motor skills, kids feel troubled with key tasks. So if your child is facing the same issue, we have presented below a list of fun, yet effective activities to develop motor skills in children.
● Drawing and painting
Different types of drawing and painting can help strengthen your child’s hand-eye coordination and manual dexterity. Painting with fingers gives kids an opportunity to use their hands and get messy. Painting with a brush helps children learn to hold a brush and gain greater control by using it as a tool.
● Playing with sponges
A new, clean piece of sponge, some water and two bowls are all you need for this activity that will help build fine motor skills. Fill one of the bowls with water and leave the other one empty. Ask your child to soak the sponge in the water and then squeeze out the water into the other bowl. It is a simple game that can strengthen the hands and forearms of your kid.
● Playdough and putty
Playdough and putty are mostly used as part of heavy work components. They can also help develop a child’s motor skills. Encourage your kid to squeeze, stretch, pinch and roll the playdough to craft interesting shapes and objects. You can even ask your kid to try to cut the play dough with scissors. But keep a constant eye on them while they use sharp objects.
● Planting and gardening
Digging and gardening are activities for building gross as well as fine motor skills among kids. For example, transferring seedlings into a garden requires proper hand-eye coordination skills to carry the smaller plant to the new hole, safely.
At Kumon, we believe that learning motor skills in early childhood is of utmost importance. Therefore, along with providing early childhood education, we also majorly focus on the development of motor skills among kids. Enrol your child in Kumon today and make them ready for tomorrow.