Two More Simple Fine Motor Art Tools
We started talking about simple fine motor art tools in my last blog post. Now, let’s explore a couple more ideas. The art area of your home or classroom naturally encourages fine motor development. As kids use the tools you provide, they strengthen their fingers and hands. So, it’s important to choose art tools that are appealing to preschool kids. At the same time, you want to make sure they provide a challenge that isn’t too frustrating. Let’s look at two options that were always popular in my preschool classroom.
punch out circle-shaped holes anymore! There are shapes like dinosaurs, cars, flowers, feet and more! So you’re sure to find some that will appeal to everyone. Even those kids who don’t normally join in on art activities! And with such a variety of shapes, sizes, and punching mechanisms, lots of different hand, finger and arm muscles get a great little workout.
(As with most art tools, I recommend getting your hole punches from a school supply or at least safety compliant store, and checking the age grading if the kids will be using them independently.)
Signed, Sealed, Delivered.
We’re still sticking with the cleanest art tools around. Next up: envelopes! As a teacher, envelopes were a staple in my art area. I kept the envelope basket stocked by saving junk mail, and envelopes from paper bills I paid online. The families in my classroom did the same, and donated hundreds of envelopes over the years.
So, what do you do with these things? The answer: you fill them up! Scraps of paper a child has cut up find a perfect home in an envelope. Large drawings folded again and again get tucked inside. Millions of shapes created with a hole punch need to be stored, and an envelope is the perfect solution. And not only are envelopes convenient, using them builds those fine motor skills! Try holding an envelope open with one hand, and filling it with scraps or folded papers with the other. It’s hard work–and kids love it! Plus, there’s an added early literacy benefit, as kids naturally want to label the outside of an envelope with marks and writing attempts. Throw a real or toy mailbox in the mix, and you’ve got a little dramatic play bonus, too! Who knew a simple envelope could be such an amazing thing?!
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