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Guide to Fine Motor Skills - 2 to 3 Years

Guide to Fine Motor Skills - 2 to 3 Years logo

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Description

Give the child time to think and respond. Remember to reward with praise. All activities are to be carried out with adult supervision only.

Encouraging Fine Motor Skills at 24 to 30 Months

From 2 years old, children are starting to show a hand preference. They can hold a pencil using a thumb and two fingers, and they will spontaneously make circular scribbles. The child shows increased manipulative skills, which enable them to pick up tiny objects accurately and place them down with more precise action. The child begins to open and close scissors and thread large beads onto a thick lace. They can now build towers of 6 to 7 (or more) blocks. 

The child can now lift and drink from an open cup and feed themselves competently with a spoon. 

Suggested objects to help develop fine motor skills at 24 to 30 months:

  • Beads (beads with large holes, curtain rings, and bangles)
  • Bricks and Duplo (different sizes)
  • Bubble wrap
  • Early roleplay (tea parties, home corner, feeding dolls, etc.)
  • Finger Puppets ('Old MacDonald Had a Farm,' Ten Green Bottles,' 'Five Fat Sausages Sizzling in a Pan,' and 'Five Little Ducks')
  • Fuzzy Felts
  • Inset puzzles and large peg boards
  • Mark Making (chalk, finger paint, a whiteboard, sand, glitter, flour, shaving foam, crayons, a paintbrush with water, an aqua mat and pen, an Etch-a-Sketch, felt pens, and paint dabbers)
  • Mr Potato Head
  • Piano / Keyboard
  • Play-Doh (add glitter, pasta, and other objects of interest)
  • Posting and slotting games
  • Scissors (to cut paper or wool) and plastic scissors (to cut Play-Doh)
  • Simple interlocking puzzles
  • Threading (thick plastic tubes, ropes, a washing line, pipe cleaners)
  • Water play (use bottles, jars with lids, squeeze and twist flannels and sponges)

Encouraging Fine Motor Skills at 30 Months to 3 Years

By two and a half, children will use their preferred hand to imitate lines, circles, and a cross (using an improved tripod grasp).

They can now build 9+ blocks, place simple shapes into an inset board, and join two-piece interlocking puzzles. They can also turn a key to open a posting box and snip paper with scissors.

The child is now eating skilfully with a spoon and will begin to use a fork.

Suggested objects to help develop fine motor skills at 30 months to 3 years:

  • Adapted scissors (with easy grip and long loop)
  • Beads (beads with small holes, buttons, and cotton reels)
  • Bricks (different sizes)
  • Bubble wrap
  • Duel control scissors (self-opening and with a double loop to support children with weaker hands)
  • Early roleplay (tea parties, home corner, feeding dolls, etc.)
  • Finger Puppets ('Old MacDonald Had a Farm,' Ten Green Bottles,' 'Five Fat Sausages Sizzling in a Pan,' and 'Five Little Ducks')  
  • Fuzzy Felts
  • Inset puzzles and interlocking puzzles
  • Interconnecting construction (such as Popoids, interlocking stars, nuts and bolts, cogs and wheels, or link chains)
  • Mark Making (chalk, finger paint, a whiteboard, sand, glitter, flour, shaving foam, crayons, a paintbrush with water, an aqua mat and pen, an Etch-a-Sketch, felt pens, and paint dabbers)
  • Mr Potato Head
  • Paper books
  • Peg boards  
  • Piano / Keyboard
  • Play-Doh (add glitter, pasta, and other objects of interest)
  • Posting and slotting games
  • Threading (a thin lace with taped end)
  • Water play (use bottles, jars with lids, squeeze and twist flannels and sponges)
  • Wind-up toys
Locality
  • Brackley Area
  • Daventry Area
  • Northampton Area
  • Towcester Area
  • West Northamptonshire
  • Northamptonshire
Age range
Suitable for ages from 24 months to 36 months
For people with
Suitable for Everyone
Eligibility criteria
Age Range - Early Years
Provider category
Universal Services - Suitable for Everyone

Address

c/o The SEND Support Service (SSS), West Northamptonshire Council, One Angel Square, Angel Street
Northampton
Northamptonshire
NN1 1ED
United Kingdom

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Last updated 29 February 2024