At four years old, most children can complete to following fine motor tasks:
- Build a tower of nine small blocks
- Drive nails and pegs
- Copy a circle
- Imitate cross
- Manipulate clay material (rolls balls, snakes, cookies)
- Hold a pencil with appropriate grasp
Tips to help your toddler develop fine motor skills:
You can help with toddler developmental milestones. Suggested play to help a toddler 42 to 48 months of age develop fine motor skills:
- Play button hide-and-seek. Provide clothes for your child featuring one or two large buttons. As your child is trying to fasten the button, pretend it is a hide-and-seek-game with the button hiding at first, then ‘peeking out’ from the hole, and finally coming all the way through.
- Cut coupons. Give your child some coupon flyers and safety scissors. Ask your child to cut out the coupons (don’t expect them to be perfect, they might not even be usable). He or she will love the feeling that they are helping you.
- Make magazine puzzles. Take a colorful page from a magazine and cut it into five or six pieces. Make the pieces sturdy by gluing onto cardboard before you cut it. Save the puzzle in an envelope to use again and again.
- Play a game of pick-up. Give your child a pair of tweezers or small tongs and two cups. Put some cotton balls, large pieces of macaroni, or large beans into one of the cups and have your child pick them up with the tweezers and put them into the other cup. Once your child can do this, make it more exciting by having a race. Do it fast. Ready, set, go!
- Wind a clock. If you have a wind-up clock, show your child how to wind the alarm or turn the hands. Not only will your child get some good fine motor practice, but it will also learn something about how clocks work.