When we think about fitness skills, we often think about big body movement activities like walking, crawling, running, jumping, hopping, skipping, and other large motor development skills. An equally important fitness skill is the development of fine motor skills.

What are Fine Motor Skills?

Fine motor skills are the small movements involving hands and fingers. Movements such as grasping and pinching are foundational skills for everyday tasks such as zipping a coat, grasping a crayon, cutting with scissors, using utensils, and so much more.

Fine Motor Activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers


1. Draw, Color, or Write

All Kinds of Shapes: Your Child Is Learning Simple Shapes, and Drawing Them  Too! - Playful Bee Blog

Provide crayons, markers, pencils, and chalk for your toddler and preschooler and encourage them to get creative. The simple act of drawing, coloring, or writing (even scribbling) helps develop fine motor skills.


2. Play with Play Dough

How to make playdough | Edmonds Cooking

Encourage your toddler and preschooler to roll, squeeze, pinch, pat, pound, and use rolling pins, cookie cutters, and other utensils as they play with play dough. Play dough is a powerful tool that aids in the development of fine motor skills.


3. Build with Blocks

16 Most Important Things Kids Learn in Preschool - Empowered Parents

Every child loves building with blocks, so provide your child with time to play with blocks. Stacking and building blocks provides fine motor development opportunities for your toddler and preschooler—not to mention, the development of imagination and scientific skills. There are so many benefits from building with blocks.


4. Play with Legos and Duplos

Life At The Day-Care Center 10992 | DUPLO® | Buy online at the Official LEGO® Shop US

Legos and Duplos support the development of fine motor skills, early math skills, perseverance, problem-solving, color and shape knowledge, hand and eye coordination, and creative thinking, and they promotes the development of attention skills. Pull out a basket of Legos or Duplos and watch the learning happen.


5. Practice with Buttons and Zippers

BrightPath Kids on X: "#Reposted @bright_little_brains 🌈RAINBOW ZIPPER BOARD!🌈 This zipper board activity is perfect for little ones to engage in hands-on learning while practicing fine motor skills, concentration, focus, and problem-solving

Provide your toddler and preschooler with an opportunity to practice with buttons and zippers. While this may require extra patience on your part, by offering your child time to practice with buttons and zippers, you are helping your toddler and preschooler to enhance their fine motor skills, eye-hand coordination, and their self-help skills.


6. Peel and Place Stickers

Super Fun Ways to Play and Learn with STICKERS! - How Wee Learn

Give your child stickers and have them peel the sticker from the sticker sheet and place on paper. The act of peeling a sticker and placing it onto paper develops the pincer grasp. This skill is critical for buttoning clothes, and it helps with eye-hand coordination, too.

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