Every day, children learn to use their thumbs. Preschoolers and babies who use crayons and rattles are both examples of this. These skills can be learned through play, which is as good as any lesson. Your child won’t even know they have toys that are good for fine motor skills. “working.”Scary Mommy reached Emma Hubbard as a Pediatric Occupational Therapist to learn more about the essential toys for strengthening fine motor skills.
Emma HubbardShe is a certified pediatric occupational therapist, with more than 12 years of experience. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Occupational Therapy at the University of Newcastle. She is also the CEO and founder of Brightest BeginningA website and YouTube channel designed to assist new parents. She shares her knowledge and experience on all things related to child development, sleep, toilet training, and feeding.
What toys can help you improve your fine motor skills?
To start, it’s helpful to better understand what fine motor skills entail. Hubbard stated that these skills are vital in preparing children for independence. “feed themselves, get dressed, brush their teeth and hair, open containers, draw, and write.”
Practice makes perfect, just like any new skill. Hubbard recommends toys that are durable and simple to use for children. “encourage a child to use small finger movements”These are the things that you need to know. “appropriate for their development”to avoid frustration, and provide the right challenges
What to look for in the best toys for fine motor skills
To help you find the right toy for where your kiddo is at developmentally, here’s what you need to know about emerging skills for the toddler and preschool age range.
Hubbard said that toddlers are still learning to pick up small objects with their index and thumb fingers, continuing on from their birth. They are also learning how to place small objects into small containers. “how to rotate their fingers and wrist for accurate placement.”
Hubbard suggests a variety of toys to help these skills be strengthened.
Hubbard stated that preschoolers are eager and willing to learn self-care skills. These skills include button placement and other skills that will help them prepare for kindergarten.
She believes toys are great for preschoolers. “threading and lacing toys, puzzles, play dough, drawing implements, Lego and [other] blocks, dolls with dress up clothes, and imaginative play kits.”They also benefit from toys that are recommended for toddlers. “further developing their hand-eye coordination, finger strength and ability to isolate their fingers to complete intricate tasks.”
Using Hubbard’s advice, we’ve rounded up the best fine motor skills toys that will entertain your kids (and exercise those little fingers), with everything from STEM-based toys to more open-ended and creative picks.
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