Fine motor skills: what it consists of and tips to develop it

The child is gradually able to use his fingers as tweezers, to insert objects into specific dies, to tear paper and to cut out. Gain fluency to take pencils and make strokes, coordinate the movements of the hands, wrists and feet with the gaze. We are, then, in the presence of a display of what is known as fine motor.

From the reflex at birth of apprehension, the child undertakes increasingly complex activities in which the so-called small muscles. From the age of 2, with each skill, he gains more self-confidence and autonomy, while developing mechanisms for overcoming challenges.

His personality is affirmed with each achievement, giving clues that allow us to see, very early, where he stands out.

What is fine motor skills?

Fine motor skills is the ability that children develop to perform tasks that require the use of certain skills with relative precision. Hands, fingers, eyes, feet are activated to unite, detach, unscrew, pick or move, gathering sets of muscles and joints in harmony with the brain.

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This is achieved by practicing short exercises that consist of taking cutlery, cutting, grabbing a pencil. With precision it is sought that the child makes the desired movement with the care that the action warrants. One of them would be to bring the spoon to the moutha, with the coordination hand eye.

For their autonomous feeding, fine motor skills are essential in the child.


ORA classic example of this characteristic is given by pick things up using the index finger and thumb as tweezers. This is complemented by taking the collected object to plates or containers. The difficulty increases if he is instructed that the things he collects correspond to shapes and colors.


ANDThis characteristic observes the child's abilities to execute efficient movements in the fulfillment of an activity. With skill you will proceed by solving problems and choosing shortcuts; especially, making decisions.


Si motor skills reflect human movements, the child who is discovering fine motor skills also finds psychomotor tools. With these meets the demands of its environment to keep balance with minimal energy costs.


Fine motor skills express refinement and harmony. There is a growing understanding of time and space, as well as the body, which is known as visomotor integration. There will be no excesses or movements out of tune.

The human being is a species that uses elaborate tools to give an account of their feelings and sensations from the corporal expression. And a child handles these skills proportionally.


The control of the characteristics described above is what establishes the level of psychomotor maturity of the child. Refinement, harmony and economy come together to express early awareness of being and being of the child in his house and known world, surrounded by his family.

See also: 9 easy crafts to do with kids

How is fine motor skills developed?

Developing fine motor skills is key in the child's growth, in the acquisition and mastery of the skills that integrate him into his environment. The kindergarten and home are to create spaces to exercise strategies that accompany you in your process towards the full knowledge of your body and its possibilities.

In this sense, here are activities that, although they seem simple, involve levels of complexity in which thousands of centuries of evolution have matured.

1. Fill shapes

On paper, draw outlines, spread a thin film of glue and, previously, have torn and cut colored paper. This involves the use of the index and thumb..

2. Play with clay

Beyond the pleasant sensation of squeezing, squeezing, stretching, rolling and pinching, there is the possibility of molding or modeling, building shapes and figures. Balls, worms or cakes. Plasticine adapts with its texture, smoothness and color to the child's imagination.

3. Make necklaces

Try a thread of wool or another material, but something thick, to thread cylinders of short pasta or perforated pieces, with rounded shapes and colors. Making the thread go through them and adding to it gives rise to a necklace, a snake, a worm or a train.

4. Plastic towers

With disposable plastic cups of the same size invite the child to build a triangular tower. We extend the base and ask him to precisely arrange the interspersed glasses.

The height achieved will tell us of the balance and the strengthened patience of our little builder.

5. Screw on and off

With this exercise the hand, wrist, memory and coordination are activated of causes and effects. If we also use colored bottles and caps, we will have the opportunity to exercise the association and rhythm of the tones.

6. Chinese shadows

Playing with hands clasped and shadows to reproduce figures of animals or things is magical and charming. Get him to imitate or invent, or at least try, will put a redoubled attention on your hands and creative possibilities.

The initial reflexes with jerky and thick movements are refined over time to get to better use the fingers.

7. Trace shadows

Continuing in the field of shadows, capturing the attention of the little ones would be achieved by arranging preferably geometric objects on a sheet of paper, where the sun reaches them. In this case, the shadows they cast on the paper would be highlighted by the children, testing the precise drawing and tracing.

8. Accompany the music

Do not lack the versatility to contribute to the development of fine motor skills by working the rhythm in an experiential way, walking to the sound of music, drumming or clapping. Coordinate what is heard and the response of the body is an effective and subtle learning.

In short, fine motor skills must be exercised

The activities that we can track to do with children and contribute to psychomotor development are varied and fun. The ideal is that is with objects, materials and resources that we have at home.

Children do not look at brands or are seduced by propaganda. We buy many things to get his attention, but it is an everyday brush, a stuffed animal or any plastic that attracts him and that he falls in love with.

Let's invest in time and opportunities to play with what we have. For growing children, everyday reality is a fascinating world.