Activities That Can Help Your 2-6-Year-Olds Develop His/Her Motor Skills
Do you find your kids, between 2-6 years, always ready to play and run around? That could be because this is the time when your child acquires and refines a lot of motor skills.1 Motor skills refer to synchronised coordination of nervous system (including the brain) with different parts of the body like hands, legs, etc. In other words, all movements are a part of motor skills. This enables them to perform various tasks such as eating with a spoon, pouring water into a glass, etc.
While your child takes part in a lot of activities in his/her school, you can aid your kid’s motor skill development at home, too.
1. Outdoor Physical Activity
Bike rides and hikes, rock climbing, dance classes, jumping rope, hula hoops, catching ball, frisbee-throwing etc. help with gross motor skills (large movements) development.
Gymnastics, tennis, badminton, table tennis, football, and volleyball require balance and eye-hand coordination.
3. Board Games
Folding paper, riding a tricycle, drawing shapes will help develop your child’s muscles of hands and legs, along with eye-hand coordination.
4. Daily Tasks
A lot of daily tasks involve use of motor skills like eating with a spoon, pouring water in a glass, dressing, brushing teeth etc.
5. Building Blocks
It allows children to develop and better their gross and fine motor skills. As they extend their limbs and bodies to grasp, pick, and move blocks, the muscles of their fingers, hands, and arms strengthen.
6. Stacking Toys
An extension of building blocks, stacking toys are also a good practice for gripping objects. Usually colourful, they come in different shapes and require stacking pieces of a particular shape and size. When kids are at the age of two, they start to comprehend shapes, so these toys can provide a different level of challenge to develop their fine motor skills and shape-size differentiation.
7. Tinkering Toys And Tool Sets
These toys require the child to twist, turn, pull and place objects in a hole, thus developing their fine motor skills. It makes them practice gripping and twisting, as they go about tinkering open-ended and preset projects with screws, fasteners, and bolts using either their bare hands or a tool, such as a wrench.
8. Do-It-Yourself Crafts
Toys made of recyclables, household items, and craft supply can challenge the child’s motor skills and develop it further. As the child works his/her way through the challenge – pushing, pulling, twisting, turning, poking, cutting, dropping, clipping, pinching, tying, stacking, buttoning and flicking – their gross and fine motor skills are put to utmost practice and improvement.
While colouring and drawing, children develop the correct pen and pencil grip they need for writing in their school years. So, crayons, non-toxic paint and brush sets, and colour pencils benefit young kids as their developing fingers learn to grasp these objects whilst drawing on colouring books and pads.
Puzzles are an engaging and enjoyable toy for children to develop and refine their fine motor skills. When playing with puzzles, the child grips, lifts, and moves knobs, pegs or chunky objects sorting and pinching them to fit into a slot. There is a trial and error process, which entails hand-eye manipulation for the child to place the right object in the right slot.
Along with these activities, nutrition also plays an important role in the development of the motor skills. But given that kids are so finicky, it can be difficult for you to get them to eat enough of everything, right? Well, adding Junior Horlicks# to their diet can help bridge the nutritional gaps and provide them with scarce nutrients such as DHA which is a major building block in the brain and important for its development and function. Junior Horlicks also has 50% higher protein* and 23 vital nutrients2 which helps in healthy height and weight gain.