Guest Post: 4 Best Fine Motor Skill Activities to Develop Your Kids’ Handwriting by Zara Lewis

April 04, 2017

While many kids naturally and spontaneously develop many of their skills through uninstructed play, it is equally common that some children have difficulties developing some of their abilities without guided assistance. It may sound like such a serious, strict term, but sometimes it’s more than enough to take an hour or two every day to play with your kids in a way that will boost their learning.

On the other hand, some kids would benefit from professional occupational therapy and school programs that implement other activities intended to help your kids improve their memory, learning capacity, attention span and fine motor skills among many other abilities. Before they set foot in a classroom, however, there are some fun ways you can help your children and prepare them for the adventures of handwriting!

Finger string games

It’s surprising how much effect such a simple technique can have on your kids’ motor skills! Teach them to play games with strings, and they will quickly boost their hand and wrist muscles, their fingers will become more nimble and their hand-eye coordination can also improve.

Cat’s Cradle and other finger games have proven to be beneficial for your kids’ brain development and can in turn help develop their handwriting. These games help kids gain a better understanding of numbers, encourage literacy and they achieve this effortlessly because kids just see them as incredibly fun.

Construction skills

The first that come to mind are definitely Legos! Not only will these colorful bricks keep your children occupied and focused for hours, but they will also strengthen their fingers, and develop their imagination. Manipulating small pieces and arranging them into meaningful forms helps kids develop those tiny hand muscles that play a vital role in learning how to write.

Another way to help them perfect their constructing skills is by playing with train tracks and puzzles that are also extremely useful for their brain and muscle development. Kids that easily lose interest in other activities tend to get lost in puzzles and Legos for much longer periods of time, which is an added benefit for their motor skills.

Arts and crafts

Some kids will gladly play with coloring books and pencils, while others would gladly create homemade jewelry with macaroni, strings, cereals, cheerios, beads, and other materials. Either way, spending time doing both types of activities and combining them can significantly improve your kids’ writing abilities. For instance, kids can use those “connect the dots” sheets to first outline the given shape with a colorful fineliner and then cut them out with scissors.

When the picture has many small, curvy shapes and fine edges, your children can have tons of fun by using differently colored fineliners and coloring pencils to fill out the drawing. Coloring, following the outline with scissors, gluing and making their artsy pieces can improve their dexterity, coordination, and muscle strength, which will ease them into writing their first letters.


Still an irresistible playing item, even for grownups, play-dough is a brilliant learning tool for encouraging your kids’ creativity, imagination, but even math skills and literacy. This wonderfully squishy substance allows your kids to shape, squeeze, press, poke, roll it, and do many other wonderful things to it that boost their palm muscle strength, hand-eye coordination, focus, and dexterity.

Play-dough is one of the most versatile learning tools your kids can safely play with because you can introduce all sorts of additions, such as branches, leaves, and pebbles from nature, or anything from your kitchen cabinet that can be mixed with it, such as pasta, rice, straws, chopsticks, or those tiny things you have no use for such as buttons, glitter, and strings. Add a few cookie cutters, alphabet shapes or simple glasses, and you’ll have an endless source of fun!

Nurturing your kids’ fine motor skills with playful and fun activities they love can have a significant impact on how your kids will master some of the most basic life skills, including handwriting. Help them develop the strength in their growing hands, fingers, palms, and elbows. Also, encourage them to use tools like scissors independently and patiently, take part in some of their games and monitor their progress, and you will quickly see how fast kids can learn.
School work will always be very important for your child’s growth, but don’t neglect their constructive playtime activities that will serve as wonderful learning tools and only help them progress even faster!

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