Fine Motor Toys – A List
The one thing I have learned since becoming a Special Needs Parent is that it is SO difficult to buy toys for Conor and Jack. Mainly because they have very rigid interests but also because they may not be physically or intellectually capable just yet for toys that are “normally” suitable for children their age.
Over the years when going to many Occupational Therapy Appointments with Conor and now with Jack I am privy to the host of fabulous toys the Therapists use to encourage children’s interaction, engagement but also to help them develop skills so many take for granted.
I have decided to put together a list of just some of the Toys I see time and time again at the Boy’s appointments which I have either gone out to buy specifically afterwards or may already have but now use as part of their therapy at home.
Here you will find a list of toys that are excellent for Fine Motor Skill development, but that also help to encourage other key areas of development. Every child need’s to be able to write legibly as they grow older. Yet if they do not have sufficient Fine Motor Skill ability they will become frustrated at their own inability. One of the most important independence tools they will need to become an independent adult when they grow up is the ability to write.
Below you will find a non-exhaustive list of Toys that help in a fun manner to develop Fine Motor ability.
♥ Mr Potato Head
If you are a regular follower of The Little Puddins Blog then you will already know we are HUGE fans of Mr Potato Head in our house. I have in the past created an extensive Mr Potato Head Free printable together with detailed information about the benefits of playing with Mr Potato Head which you can find here.
Playing with Mr Potato Head is a great way to develop Fine Motor Skills as it comes with an array of small accessories which you must use in order to fully put Mr Potato together. It also is a great way to encourage communication, concentration together with Hand-Eye co-ordination.
♥ Fisher Price Piggy Bank
This is one toy we always seem to have in the house! Hailey had one as a baby. Conor inherited it until it eventually broke down lol! So we now have a newest version for Jack which is the same but the pieces are slightly thinner, all the better for his pincer grasp!x
This is a great toy to teach about “Choice”, you could ask your child to pick between two (or more) coin colors, thereafter he/she would pick which ever one they preferred and place it in the slot at the top. It also encourages Hand-Eye co-ordination, and Fine Motor Skill development as your child will have to very carefully place the coin in to the slot in order to make it fall down to the Pig’s belly.
It is a great reaction toy in that it plays songs, says “a chew” and also makes a jingling coin sound when the coin falls in to the Pig’s belly.
♥ Jumbo Tweezers
Jumbo Tweezers are a MUST if you have a child who is learning to develop their Fine Motor Skills. They can be used any number of ways! For example encouraging your child to pick up craft pom poms, sorting buttons/shapes, out side picking up flowers. I picked up these Tweezers online for around €12 posted a while ago. But you can find them on all good Special Needs Websites.
♥ Wooden Shape Sorting Box
Almost all houses with children will have had a shape sorter at one time or another, we have had numerous types, plastic, wooden and even fabric. The Shape Sorter is great because it encourages the use of the pincer and palmer grasp to name but a few. It also encourages, color/size and shape discrimination. It helps to develop Hand/Eye co-ordination and it also helps to improve concentration and the ideas of “finishing a task” and “sorting”. A great budget toy.
♥ Peg Board and Pegs
Conor LOVES his Peg Board but he can get frustrated with how long it takes to complete the task. It is a great way to discriminate colors and it really focuses on the pincer grasp. A brilliant way to encourage Hand/Eye co-ordination together. A great all around toy that is a fun way to teach your child to slow down and concentrate. It cam quiet tedious to begin with for your child if they are having trouble getting the pegs in the holes but with time and practice they will overcome their frustration and will master this skill.
♥ Threading Buttons/Objects/Beads
Threading beads/buttons/objects is another great way to encourage Hand/Eye co-ordination, pincer grasp, patience, color co-ordination, size discrimination. It also teaches your child about a start and an ending when all the beads/buttons/Shapes run out. You do not have to buy a Threading set specifically. You can make your own version quiet cheaply. I bought some colored pipe cleaners and some extra large plastic buttons for Conor to practice his threading technique he had great fun and it cost less than €5. He plays with them most days.
♥ Stacking Cubes
A great toy and commonly found in many stores for a few euro. It is a great toy to encourages numeracy, size discrimination, the ability to build and knock down. They are great for Hand/Eye co-ordination, for encouraging little hands to steady themselves as they carefully place blocks on top of each. This is one of the first toys we ever used with Conor to encourage him to interact with us and now with Jack he is using it everyday. He loves it when we build up his stacking blocks and then he knocks them down! He thinks it is the funniest thing ever and takes into fits of giggles.x
Sorting objects is another excellent way to encourage Fine Motor development. I have collected heaps of different colored objects over time for Conor and now Jack to sort. The above pictures shows different sized wooden buttons, some of which I have hand painted so that I had a better selection of colors for Conor to try and sort.
In the picture I have the Jumbo Tweezers with the sorting bowls but ultimately if the child were using his/her hands that would also be an excellent manner to encourage repetitious use of the Pincer Grasp.
We use a variety of games and activities at home to encourage Conor and now Jack to develop skills that do not come naturally to them. When planning these activities I also like to ensure they are activities Hailey likes to play so that she is not left out nor feels left out.
I hope you found this Fine Motor Toys Post helpful.x As always thank you for stopping by my little corner of the web.x
If you would like to find out what Hailey, Conor and Jack get up to everyday, please stop by our Facebook Page which you can find here. x