Guest Post by Ashley of Me and Marie Learning
Winter is here! With the cold temperature and falling snow, winter sometimes means no outdoor play for our children. Which in turn leads to our children having higher energy levels! So, why not make your own motor activities out of simple supplies you might have on hand? There are many ways to differentiate each activity for multiple age groups.
Fine Motor DIY Activity: Puff Ball Pinch
Puff Balls: Use larger balls for those beginning to work on fine motor skills and smaller balls for those who are advanced in fine motor skills.
Tongs: As you can see in the picture below, there are many different types of tongs/pinchers. Please select tongs that are the appropriate size for your child’s hand to minimize frustration.
Cups: I only use 2 cups when working with 2 year olds. You could add more cups for older children. I also make this activity a color sorting activity by only using two colors of balls and matching colored cups.
There are many ways to use this game. Try pinching balls from the table and dropping into the cup. Sort them as you pinch and drop them. You can also count the balls as you drop them in the cup. Or, you can pinch balls already inside of the cup to get them out. Pinching helps to strengthen the muscles in the hands needed for writing and cutting.
Gross Motor DIY Activity: Loofah Hit
Loofah: You can find these cheap at your local drug store or dollar store. Loofahs are great indoor alternatives to balls because they are soft and are not as likely to break something!
Yarn/String: Attach the loofah to a piece of string or yarn. Tape up to the top of a door frame or use a push pin in a low ceiling. Make sure the loofah is hanging low enough for your child to easily see and hit it.
Paddle (optional): We use a plastic paddle from a outdoor play set. The paddle is optional as you can just use your hands as well.
This Loofah Hit game encourage Eye and Hand Coordination. Strengthening your child’s hand-eye coordination will help your child when learning to write or tying shoes. The Loofah Hit game can even be played with two players, hitting the loofah back and forth.
Try making your own motor games and beat some of those indoor winter blues!
Ashley is the owner of Me & Marie Learning, a blog all about early learning. She has taken some time off teaching in a traditional setting to be at home with her young children. Ashley is now an in-home childcare provider, teaching her own and other children in her preschool room. Ashley has a degree in Elementary Education and Early Childhood Education with a Master’s Degree in Reading and Literacy.