Here are a few tips that can stimulate fine motor movements:
- Sing songs with hand gestures (like Itsy Bitsy Spider, Patty Cake)
- Provide age appropriate items for kids to pick-up, shake, manipulate.
- 6-months – ball large enough it won’t fit in mouth.
- 12-months – finger food items, (Gerber stars)
- 2 years – play-do, finger paints, small pieces of crayon about one to two inches
- 3 years – start scissor use, legos
- 5 years – writing, legos, use of modified chopsticks.
Here are a few tips that can stimulate gross motor movements:
- Get down on the floor and play with your child
- Help your child work to get objects as opposed to just handing it to them
- 2 months: Practice tummy time; build up your child's tolerance with a bit more time each day
- 6 months: Have your child practice sitting on their own, practice reaching by placing objects beside them
- 9 months: Practice hands and knees play time and crawling
- 12 months: Practice walking with your child, use your hands for support and place objects a few feet apart for independent practice
- 3 years: Practice jumping and standing on one foot; put shoes on in a standing position
A child who has delayed gross motor and fine motor skills development because of injury or chronic conditions may benefit from Physical or Occupational Therapy.
*Gross motor skills: Large muscle movements for walking, rolling, crawling, throwing, kicking or climbing.
**Fine motor skills
: Small muscle movement in hands and mouth for speaking, manipulating toys, writing, using small objects, or fastening clothing.