Inside: It’s easy to strengthen fine motor skills at home with toddlers and preschoolers. I’ve put together over 55 fun activities that your kids will love!
Fine motor is also necessary for independence. Think about zipping a coat, buttoning pants, opening a door, getting a glass of water. These all require fine muscle control.
Bonus: I’ve created a free printable checklist for you to download, as well as free fine motor printables. Scroll down towards bottom of this page for the link.
55+ Ways to Strengthen Fine Motor Skills at Home
Note: This is Post #1 in a series of At-Home activities for parents and caregivers. Make sure to also see our other posts in this At-Home series:
- 15+ Shapes Activities and Printables for Home
- 25+ Color Activities and Printables for Home
- 20+ Fun and Easy Toddler Activities for Home
According to some studies, children are entering kindergarten lacking fine motor skills. And then the question is asked how? How can we help our young children build strong hands? I hear this question often from my own preschool parents. And so I thought I’d put together a list of fine motor skills activities that can easily be done at home.
This collection of fine motor skills activities is geared for children ages 2-5. Some will be more suitable for younger children, some for older. Choose the activities you feel are best for your children and build on them as they are ready.
Add basters to a tub of water or the bathtub.
Transfer water to an ice cube tray.
Squeeze watercolors on a vertical surface.
Use dot markers on a white board.
Use cut straws to make a necklace.
Thread beads onto pipe cleaners.
Pick up plastic caps with tongs.
Paint with Q-Tips.
Press small items onto sticky paper.
Squeeze playdough through the holes of a citrus or garlic press.
Press circle stickers onto the letters of your name. (Busy Toddler)
Thread beads on matching colored feathers. (The OT Toolbox)
Sort cereal by color and transfer the pieces with tweezers. (The Resourceful Mama)
Place buttons on drawn lines and zigzags. (Learning 4 Kids)
Drop pom poms through a cardboard tube. (The Imagination Tree)
Use gloves while putting pieces together. (Stir the Wonder)
Hammer tees into styrofoam blocks. (Modern Preschool)
Transfer blocks to a muffin tin using a spatula. (Busy Toddler)
Use a hole punch with paper. (The Resourceful Mama)
Push sticks through holes. (Playdough to Plato)
Thread pasta with straws. (Laughing Kids Learn)
Wrap rubber bands around cut pool noodles. (And Next Comes L)
Pick up small plastic animals and match them. (Inspiration Laboratories)
Color on sandpaper. (I Can Teach My Child)
Drop watercolors onto coffee filters using a medicine dropper. (Messy Little Monster)
Push pipe cleaners through holes in a cardboard box. (The OT Toolbox)
Cut paper for a fun decoupage activity. (Mama Smiles)
Make patterns while pounding golf tees. (Buddy and Buddy)
Draw in colored sand. (Buggy and Buddy)
Practice cutting skills with these free printable patterns. (Fun with Mama)
Use different tools to drop pom poms. (Crafty Kids at Home)
Count and smash playdough. (Stir the Wonder)
Use a water pistol for painting outdoors. (Messy Little Monster)
Draw on erasable wall decals. (Artsy Momma)
Transfer pom poms into the cups of an egg carton. (The Stay-at-Home Mom Survival Guide)
Wrap rubber bands around a can. (HOAWG)
Push pipe cleaners into playdough and add beads. (Fun with Mama)
Clip clothespins onto numbered cards. (Fun with Mama)
String buttons onto pipe cleaners. (Preschool Powol Packets)
Peel masking tape off a table. (The Stay-at-Home Mom Survival Guide)
Collect your toys and wrap them in paper. (Little Worlds Big Adventures)
Thread straw pieces onto pipe cleaners to make an octopus. (Buggy and Buddy)
Drop colored rock salt into a jar to make a rainbow. (KC Edventures)
Tie a knot. (HOAWG)
Use the thumb to press beads into playdough. (The OT Toolbox)
Create a pouring station. (Busy Toddler)
Drop Beads through the holes in the lid of a jar. (Modern Preschool)
Stretch rubber bands around pine cones. (The Imagination Tree)
Balance pom poms on cut pool noodles using tweezers. (Learning 4 Kids)
Build a sponge tower. (Toddler Approved)
Push Q-Tips through cut straw pieces. (Mess for Less)
Pinch clothespins on a basket. (School Time Snippets)
Stack foam blocks in water. (Still Playing School)
Draw on tinfoil that is covered with shaving cream. (Pocket of Preschool)
Drop pony beads onto small sticks. (School Time Snippets)
Put rubber bands around the bottom of a muffin tin. (And Next Comes L)
Squeeze and drop watercolors from pipettes onto colored dots. (You Clever Monkey)
More Fine Motor Resources
You’ve asked about these particular subjects, so here they are:
Vestibular Activities (The OT Toolbox)
What is Tactile Defensiveness (Touch Sensitivity)? (Griffin Occupational Therapy)
Stages of Pencil Grasp Development (OT Mom)
Free Printable Fine Motor List
Click on the photo below for the pdf download:
Free Fine Motor Printables
Bonus! Grab your copy of this fun scissor practice packet:
32 pages total of scissor practice activities in a age appropriate and developmental sequence. For preschool through 1st graders.
Join me over at Melissa & Doug’s blog to find more fine motor activities that can be done at home!
More fine motor skills fun: