Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Working on Fine Motor Skills

To go along with our "less TV, more play" I decided to find some crafts or games that would help my son with his fine motor skills. I haven't noticed that he had a problem with them but it's nice to challenge him and get his mind and hands working outside of painting or colouring.

The first one we tried was fun and edible!

Froot Loop Necklaces!

What You Need:

A small bowl of froot loops, or other cereal that has a hole in the middle.
A long strand of thick string

How to Do It:

Well, first I tried to tie the end of the string around a small piece of kabob skewer to make it easier for my son to thread the cereal....that didn't work. So, I tried to just let him thread it onto the string...that didn't work because it kept fraying. Finally, I wrapped the end in duct tape...but I used too much and it was too thick to thread. Eventually I got the perfect amount of tape wrapped around the end of the thread. I placed the other end of the string into a piece of play dough and then rolled that into a ball; but, you could just hold onto it.

Then, I showed my toddler how to thread the cereal before handing the tools over to him. He would sit there and say, "through the middle", "all the way down" and "ta-da!" when he got the cereal on the string. A few times he was SO close to getting it on but would aim improperly or drop the cereal. It was hard for me to not take it from him and do it myself, but every time I asked if he wanted help he'd say, "No, I do it" And he did do it, most of the time. When he encountered a loop that had too small of a hole or frustrated him too much he simple ate it.

Yes, it's February and he's wearing a Santa pajama shirt. It's his favourite.

And when our necklace was done he wrapped it around his wrist a few times and munched on it for a snack!

We also sorted our rainbow pasta. I gave him coloured bowls in the same colour as each noodle and told him to put the red ones in the red bowl, etc. Working on motor skills and getting him to clean. Awesome.

Our next activity was an inadvertent one when my son noticed my Beauty and the Beast piggy bank and wanted to see what it was. Well, wouldn't you know that led to him sitting on my bed for half an hour putting quarters, dimes, nickels, and pennies into the Belle piggy bank! I could hear him say, "big one" or "little one" as he put a coin through the slot and then his little voice yell, "plop!" or "clunk!" as the change fell in.

These activities not only helped my son's hand-eye coordination and motor skills, but they helped me to remember that he can do things on his own and he's not so much a teeny tiny baby that needs his Mommy to do everything for him. Like I said before, there were moments where it was hard for me to not take whatever item from him and show him how to do it or help him, but he never asked and I held back. After only being shown how to do something once he had picked it up and I was reminded, yet again, that he's growing up and able to master and accomplish things on his own. I know this is only the start to many more moments where I realize I have to step back and let him take control but it's nice to know he's capable of doing his own problem solving, even at the tender age of 2.

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