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15 Effective Fine Motor Activities For Toddler & Preschooler

In this blog, Audrey is almost three years old or 33 months to be exact. Time flies rapidly! It seems like it was just yesterday when we throw a party for her first birthday. Well, babies grow rapidly and the next thing you know you will be talking to a more bubbly and full of energy little human. Her developmental progress aligns perfectly to her age, a good time to do more observation and of course a quick refresh of the prepared environment. As a homeschooler, our materials are very basic. We only use learning materials and activities that are best suited to her learning abilities. Whatever advance toys, materials or books we have, we always keep it for her next learning stages. I gather a compilation of activities that enhances the refinement of small muscles or fine motor skills as well as hand-eye coordination. Being a mother and a guide plays a big role in deeply involved with every developmental milestone she’s into. Preparing a variety of fine motor activities each week is a must for a very active child.

At home, you can always find a variety of materials you need to strengthen your child’s hand muscles. You can also check other play ideas on my Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram. Here are my collections of activities at home that supports a child’s fine motor development. 

Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. Please read my disclosures.

FINE MOTOR2

img_3523WATER BEADS

This is one of her favorite activities at home. Something stretchy, sticky and wet is always a big hit for young children. These beads can grow bigger once submerge into a basin with water. Choose a non-toxic water bead and your close supervision is a must.

img_3513PAINTING WITH WATERCOLOR

Great for hand-eye coordination. At her stage, she’s still working on mixing water with the color palettes. I love to see the joy on her face when she discovers different shades from mixing with a variety of paint colors.

img_3493PEG NUMBER BOARDS

Putting pegs into a hole develops grasps and release, refined pinches and eye-hand coordination. This work/activity is perfect if you want to introduce the number concept to your kids in an early stage of their life. My daughter started using this when she was about sixteen months. At that age, she still putting and chewing objects to her mouth. Close supervision is important for young toddlers.

img_3468COLOR SORTING RINGS

I got this color rings sorting board at Lakeshore. A well-made wooden toy for toddlers. Toddlers love posting works and will engage in this type of activity in a heartbeat. This activity master’s eye-hand coordination, refine pinches and develop pincer grasps.

img_3465NAME TRACING WITH BEADS

She’s using small colored beads (choking hazard) to trace each letter of her name. This is a great way to teach a child in preparation for using a pencil for writing. I got this wooden tracing board at Etsy

img_3419KINETIC SAND PLAY

Instead of using play dough, I choose this plain colored kinetic sand and a set of 5 cutting tools. This activity strengthens small hand muscles.

img_3416These are the five different playdough cutters she uses to create fun shapes and figures.

img_3305FOAM STICKERS

Stickers are always a big hit at home. It’s also another great fine motor activities that are easily available at home and a good calm down activity for toddlers.

img_3261COLORING

Young children can grasp easily when they use a bigger or thicker crayons and markers. It is also advisable to use non-toxic and washable crayons for safety.

img_3196BLOCK STACKING

Yes, That’s what they love to do every day! Babies and toddlers love the cause-and-effect of stacking cubes/objects and knocking it down by their older sibling! This is a way of self-created JOY that is of course very precious to us as a parent. This activity strengthens and supports the whole hand grasp and enhances hand-eye coordination.

img_9788LETTER TRACING

A good activity to efficiently improve pincer grip, eye-hand coordination, and concentration. I got this wooden alphabet tracing board at Etsy shop from Jennifer.

img_9538DOT PAINT

The thickness of these NON-TOXIC dot paints fits perfectly in a child’s tiny hands. The textured side of the marker promotes a fun SENSORY experience that is highly important to a child’s developing senses.

img_9425CUTTING

This activity takes a lot of practice and observation. Close supervision is needed. There are a lot of toddler-friendly scissors or child-friendly scissors available onlineBelow is the cutting tray we regularly use at home. These paper strips are from trimmings of our Montessori nomenclatures and three-part cards we often use for homeschool unit study. I created four basic patterns for practice: Slanted lines, diagonal, vertical and wavy lines.

img_2988WATER PLAY

An all-time favorite activity during spring and summer! She spends a couple of hours outdoor doing this fun-filled water play. Water pouring enhances hand-eye coordination as well as fine motor skills and gross motor. The ability to lift the arms to pour water in a repetitive manner master the pincer grip in preparation for writing. Read this helpful article about water play.

img_2458STICKERS

I found this hole reinforcements an amazing way to get my toddler easily engage in an activity with focus. We use this to trace shapes or patterns of an object. As long as you have a bunch of this at home or school, your child will love sticking. A great activity to promote concentration, hand-eye coordination, creativity, pincer grip exercises, and  pre-writing skills

img_2596WASHING

There is a vast washing activity for toddlers like baby doll washing, toy washing, play kitchen utensil washing, clothes washing, fruits & vegetable washing and a lot more things to wash. This type of activity enhances hand muscles, pincer grip, and eye-hand coordination and most importantly once the child knows how to clean up after each meal and do a mini washing like this, independence and self-responsibility develop naturally.

What are your kid’s favorite fine motor activities? Share this effective fine motor article that your friends and family will enjoy. Follow my blog for more Montessori homeschool activities and learning tips.

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3 Comments

  1. These activities are awesome! Will definitely be checking back as my daughter gets older. She’s currently 16 months and enjoys taking off the lids to Tupperware and putting them back on

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