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Fine Motor Activities
Activities to promote hand development for pencil use and other tasks
Click on the links by each skill area for discussions of why they are important

Editor's Note, Fall 2012: there are so many websites nowadays with fine motor activities all over them, from Pinterest to OT's sites (example: Therapy Fun Zone) - so many activities and so many craft etc. projects you can have kids make! It is easy to get caught up in the product and the interests of the child (or OT or parent) and forget you are supposed to be addressing. What I have tried to put together is the background on these activities. Why would you select beading for one child but poking holes with a toothpick for another? If you can't break down the components of each task to be specifically targeting the area of weakness for the child, you may not be strengthening needed areas. By linking this page to the Fine Motor 101 page, I'm hoping OTs and others will be able to get this background information to select good activities, and also to observe and gently correct or steer the mechanics of the child while he or she is completing it.

Similarly, there are so many apps out there now, and particularly if you work with children on the autism spectrum it can be a great tool to use a touch screen device such as the iPad. I like the Advance Magazine site's App of the Week to help find some ideas. The only app that I mention on this site is PDF Notes, in conjunction with my Pencil Obstacle Courses. I love assistive technology in many forms (another website maybe?), but beware letting a tool become a waste of time or a baby-sitter. Use your task analysis to decide what each activity is actually working on besides finger isolation and some rough hand-eye coordination. For example, one thing that drives me nuts about letter-formation and other visual-motor applications on touch screens (not to mention SmartBoards or Promethean Boards) is that you can't stabilize on the side of your hand! *Unless you place some blocking material in the way, hint hint*


Jump to: Bilateral Integration
For a discussion of what this is and why it is important, click here


Postural and Shoulder Stability
If you want a discussion of why this is important, click here

Developing stability in wrist extension:
If you want a discussion of why this is important, click here

Developing stable arches within the hands:
For a discussion of why this is important, click here
Strengthening Thumb-Index Webspace:
For a discussion of why this is important, click here

Separating Motoric Function of the Two Sides of the Hand:
For a discussion of why this is important, click here


Improving In-Hand Manipulations Skills:
For a discussion of why this is important, click here


Overall Strengthening of Hands and Fingers:
For a discussion of why this is important, click here
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