At Home Activities to Develop Fine Motor Skills for Dyspraxia
Children with dyspraxia can struggle with fine motor skills, which can cause problems with key tasks like grasping utensils (like pencils), moving objects with their fingertips, and using tools like scissors. They may also have difficulty learning to tie shoes.
If your child’s fine motor skills need a little extra help, try these fun activities:
Colouring books are a great way to get your child to work on their manual dexterity and can help improve pencil grip. They are also an enjoyable activity for your child.
If your child has problems with pencil grasp why not try using chalk outdoors, this makes it more fun for your child and you can get different chalk sizes that help them work on building hand muscles.
Painting can help strengthen your child’s hand-eye coordination and manual dexterity. Finger painting gives kids an opportunity to use their hands. While painting with a brush helps kids learn to hold a brush and gain greater control using it as a tool.
Playdough and putty are often used as part of the “heavy work” (activity that pushes or pulls against the body) component of a sensory diet, they can help with sensory processing issues as well as improve a child’s fine motor skills. Encourage your child to squeeze, stretch, pinch and roll “snakes” or “worms” with the play clay. You can even have your child try to cut the play-dough with scissors.
Digging and gardening requires smaller muscle control. For instance, transferring seedlings into a garden requires hand-eye coordination skills. Your child will also need to be able to grasp a trowel to dig and to use a pincer grasp when picking up seeds to plant.
Baking cookies or buns with your child is a great exercise to improve their fine motor skills. Stirring ingredients provides a workout of the arms and muscles and cutting and spooning out portions can improve hand-eye coordination. Plus, you have some homemade treats for after!
Get your child using scissors. When scissors are held correctly, and when they fit a child’s hand well, cutting activities will exercise the very same muscles which are needed to manipulate a pencil in a mature tripod grasp. They can cut different items like paper, play dough and straws, this will help with their manual dexterity.
The fine motor exercises in the Beats Medical Dyspraxia app are also a great way to practice and improve fine motor skills such as pincer grip, coordination, strength, and agility.