In part one of this two-part blog series, we went over some simple programs or activities that often help children with development of motor skills. Motor skills speak to things like movements and task completion, involving the brain and also various other bodily systems, and they're one of the most important developmental areas for young children.
At Devlin's Child Development, these and related themes are regular parts of our Sandy child care programs, from our preschool classes to daycare, after-school care and more. What are some activities or programs we often employ for motor skill development, including those that can also be replicated at home and in other settings? Here are a few more to consider.
Some of the most enriching motor skill activities for kids come from outdoor pursuits, such as gardening and planting. Do you have a basic garden on your property, or maybe even a more significant landscaping setup? Even if you just have a few plants and some grass, there are several ways kids can get involved in the planting process and enjoy the benefits of doing so.
One way is to let children select plants or flowers they'd like to see in the garden, and then help them plant them in an appropriate spot. This teaches patience and care, as well as basic botany (the study of plants). Depending on your setup, kids may also be able to water plants, weed the garden and more.
For really young children, you can simply carry a potted plant out to the yard and let them do the rest – observing, digging in the soil, patting it back down etc. This activity can help with hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills.
Where appropriate and safe, water activities can provide great motor skill development opportunities for children. Things like swimming, wading in a pool or playing in the sand and surf all offer chances for kids to move around and use their muscles.
In addition, many water activities also require some degree of hand-eye coordination and balance. Swimming, for example, requires good control of the arms and legs, as well as the ability to coordinate breathing with movement. And for toddlers, simply pouring water from one container to another can be a fun and challenging task.
Be sure to take steps to ensure safety for any such activities that take place.
Many sports and athletic activities offer great opportunities for kids to tune their motor skills. Activities like soccer, basketball, baseball, gymnastics and others require good hand-eye coordination, balance and strength.
What's more, kids who participate in sports and athletics generally enjoy better physical health overall. And as they get older, these activities can set them up for a successful future in terms of college scholarships or even careers.
For more on the kinds of activities and pursuits that will help children develop their motor skills, or to learn more about any of our childhood development or educational programs in Sandy or nearby areas, speak to the staff at Devlin's Child Development today.