Building Blocks Therapy

Fine Motor Activities 

Here are some great activities you can try at home with your child to develop their fine motor skills - remember to make the activities fun!

Pre-writing strategies 

  • Encourage your child to do pre-writing activities by specifically setting up an area with a child size table and chair and a range of fun and interesting textures, crayons, coloured pencils and paper.
  • Drawing and doing activities on a vertical surface is important for this age group as it helps to develop your child’s arm and hand skills. For example,encourage your child to draw on a blackboard, paint at an easel, stick magnetic letters to the fridge or put stickers on a piece of paper taped to the wall.
  • Do not be too eager to teach your child how to write letters. Instead have fun drawing together, copying shapes and colouring in. 
  • Praise your child as her skills develop, as this will encourage her to have a positive attitude to pre-writing activities and experience the feeling ‘I can do this’.
  • Many commercially printed activity books, such as colouring, dot to dot or mazes, are available from some newsagents, post offices, book or toy shops. Make sure they are simple and suitable for your child’s age. Your child may need your help to understand what to do on each page. 
  • Encourage your child to do fine motor activities, as this will help your child develop good hand skills. For example, art and craft activities, playing with playdough, building with blocks
  • Encourage your child to do a drawing and then ask him to tell you about it when he has finished.
  • Encourage your child to draw a person – if he needs help give him some verbal prompts such as “what about the arms”, “what about hair”, etc.
  • Draw simple pictures such as houses, snakes, flowers, trees, spiders.
  • Make birthday cards or special occasion cards.
  • Make a book
  • Draw on a Magnadoodle or Megasketcher.
  • Duo drawing – draw dots or squiggles for your child to join up and make a picture, or draw the outline of a person and get your child to draw the eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Show your child how to draw simple lines and shapes and then get him to do it. Start with horizontal and
  • vertical lines then progress to a circle, square and triangle. Then see if your child can draw the shape  by himself.
  • If your child is interested in writing his name show him how you write each individual letter and get him to copy one letter at a time. It may be easier to start with capital letters.
  • Draw around your child’s body on a large piece of paper and get him to colour in his clothing.
Tracing, mazes and dot to dots
  • Trace around hands and feet.
  • Rainbow drawing – draw lines, shapes or simple designs. Ask your child to trace the line using different coloured pencils, patels or chalks.
  • Draw simple pathways for your child to draw along. For example a straight lined road so that a car can get to a house, or a dog can get to a bone. Start with straight, wide paths and progress to narrower curving paths. 
  • Draw simple mazes for your child. Always start on the left hand side of the paper. 
  • Draw single line overlapping pathways for your child to trace over.
  • Try tracing lines, patterns or shapes with a finger then a pencil.
  • Join dots or dashes of shapes, simple pictures or letters of your child’s name. 
  • Trace around stencil shapes made from cardboard or old ice-cream lids. Then try drawing the shape without the stencil.
  • Do simple dot to dot and mazes from activity books.
  • Try using changeable textures and different style crayons or pencils when doing the above activities. Repeated practice will help your child to develop his skills.
Sensory activities
  • Find hidden objects in sand, rice or lentils. 
  • Finger painting. 
  • Draw in shaving cream.
  • Roll, pinch, pull and squash playdough, exercise putty, or jumping putty. Roll the playdough into sausages. Make round balls by rolling the playdough between the palms of your hands. Make a bird’s nest by pinching the playdough between the thumb and fingers. Pinch small pieces of playdough the size of a pea. Squash playdough balls between your thumb and index finger.
Grasp and manipulation activities
    • Play commercial games such as snakes and ladders and card games such as memory or snap.
    • Threading activities such as beads or lacing cards.
    • Play with marble races.
    • Tear up coloured paper for pasting or collage activities.
    • Decorate a picture using tissue paper. Ask your child to scrunch up small pieces of tissue paper between her thumb, index and middle fingers and glue them onto the picture.
    • Button up buttons on clothing.

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