Children’s Fine Motor Skills

When we hear about fine motor skills, we quickly tend to think “children seated around a table” or even “cutting and graphic activities”. However, in early childhood, before you get there, you will have to be patient and go through different stages. Motor skills are all the functions that allow you to control your movements. Fine motor skills relate to precise movements that engage small muscles, especially those of the hand and fingers. Grasping an object, throwing it, bringing an object to his mouth, but also cutting or drawing are part of these fine movements.

Motor skills and drawing

The control of the grip of the pencil and the approach of the sheet are two essential phases.  Between the ages of two and three, coloring, finger painting and brush painting are favorite activities. The drawing and writing are not yet differentiated. Visual inspection from 2 to 3 years: visual-manual coordination requires a certain manual skill, visual perception, processing of kinesthetic and proprioceptive information and good ability to control movement. The child often performs his movement from the forearm with the bent wrist.

hand with oil pastel draws the heart

The coordination used for all graphic traces require a certain degree of precision. The eye will follow the hand and then guide it. Thanks to the visual inspection, the line shows its first forms. Little by little, the child makes vertical and horizontal lines, broken lines, mixed curls, then curves and often sweeps. Light, strong lines will allow to exert the pressure of his gesture. Little by little, the mental representation of the graphic appears. Around 3-4 years old, the child occupies the graphic space, his lines are drawn over the entire space of the sheet. These gestures are crossed, the coordination of movements of the shoulder and the hand is put in place, the child can make curls. The flexor of the thumb begins to be strong enough for the grip. The thumb makes it possible to slow down the line and fragments the gesture.

You can find our drawing activities for kids here: Drawing Category

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