When parents are considering the many ideal early learning skills before primary school, they often believe that this should include the letters of the alphabet and counting 1 to 10, or other activities related to what they imagine will be on a school’s curriculum. And although those are important to know, much of early learning education happens alongside the child’s physical development, which is typically referred to as motor skills. There are two major types of motor development, both of which are vital: gross motor skills and fine motor skills.
Development of Gross Motor Skills
Gross motor skills are also known as physical skills. They require the movement of the entire body and involve the body’s muscles to perform daily tasks like walking, sitting down, standing up, and running. Gross motor skills also include skills involving hand and eye coordination like catching a ball, throwing it, or kicking it.
Gross motor abilities influence daily tasks like a child’s ability to maintain the proper posture that will affect their ability to perform fine motor skills like writing or sitting in the classroom.
To promote gross motor skill development, children can participate in fun activities including playing football. You may start by simply rolling a ball towards your child and asking them to kick it. As your little one gains confidence, you can ask them to run towards the ball and kick it. The more engaging the activity is, the more enthusiasm that they may express.
Development of Fine Motor Skills
Fine motor skills entail the use of the smaller muscles which control the thumb, fingers, and the hand as a whole. These are essential for everyday activities including brushing their teeth, zipping and unzipping a jacket, holding a crayon, and writing. Fine motor skills can be developed through Montessori materials, play with interlocking blocks, art projects like drawing or coloring, playing with modelling clay, shaping paper into planes or boats, and many more.
Motor development is crucial to the overall development of a child. It is an important way where a child cognitively and physically learns and grows by aiding in hand and eye coordination, developing self-confidence, balance, and providing the child with a sense of their emerging abilities.