Fine Motor Skills Activities for Children


Fine motor skills develop tremendously during childhood period. Schools provide children with activities and aquipments to promote them. What parents should know is, we can also help children to develop these skill at home. Parents maybe doubt of their capabilities to do that. But actually we do not need expensive equipments, complicated instruction, or certain place. It can be simple, fun, and cost effective.

First, we should understand “what is fine motor skills”?

Do you ever see your little children struggle to grasp foods? Or hold pencil properly? Or take their toys? Or buttoning their clothes? These task are the examples of fine motor skills. 

Trying to Grasp Fruits
While gross motor skills involve whole body movement and muscles (such as walking, running, jumping, climbing, throwing, and kicking) fine motor skills involves more particular area which are muscles of the hands. Both contribute children’s abilities to perform everyday skills needed, from basic self-care to academic activities. Gross motor skills enable children to sit, stand firmly, move around, endure, and navigate the enviroment. Whereas fine motor skills enact in activities that required deftness of the hands such as writing, drawing, colouring, cutting, fastening the buttons, sticthing, making braid, etc.

So how parents can help?

Children can develop fine motor skills naturally, but parents can encourage them to engage in activities that help to develop them. Amazingly, children find the ideas of these activities by themselves spontaneously. But how if the children did not initiate? You do not have to worry, because every children has their own ways to develop their skills. Parents can do the activity in front of them as model so the children can learn how to do it.

What parents see as ordinary or messy actions, turn out are ways to practice fine motor skills. For example is when children tear papers into pieces or squezze the papers. These action, even as how ruined books or wasted papers as they may seem, can build the hand muscle’s power. Imagine how many efforts they have to do to put powers and control their hands in order to do that actions.

Muscle Power: Tear, Squeeze, then Put Them into Glass
To avoid there will be ruined books, make sure that your valuable books or papers are kept out from children’s reach. Give them unused papers, newspapers, or books.

Spill Fruits into Her Glass
Other activities that children find fascinated them is moving objects. Eventhough it fascinate children, but it could be a very tough job also. They could struggle to grasp the objects they what to move or put the objects into the new place. Moving objects can be opportunity for children to develop their hand’s control and accuracy. We can use objects or equipments that already we have in our house. Like put the wasted papers to basket, transfering water with glass, spoon, or pipette. We can also use schools utensil such as moving pencil into another box.

Transitioning Water 
Put It Back into The Glass
We can also use food ingredients, fruits, or vegetables as material and equipment. Such as moving fruits from one plate to another, tearing vegetable leaves, or just simply pick foods from their plate.

Put Pencils into The Box
Another idea is insert coin or paper into the moneybox. We can also modify to make holes in boxes, jars, or containers so children can insert objects into them. For younger children, make sure this activity under your supervision so there will be no incidents like eat up the coins or papers. Especially for children that still in oral phase.

The Struggle is Real

Insert Coins Into Moneybox
The struggle is real to do this action for younger children. As adult we have to make sure the activities are achievable for children to do it. Put no pressure to the children and make the process to be fun.

We also do not need certain time or place to conduct the activities. Whenever and wherever children want to do these activities, allow them. As long the safety can be assured and parents can clean up the children post activities.


Kidsense. (2017). Fine Motor Skilss.  Accessed through

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