Hand-Eye Coordination Letter Activity for Kids

How many times a day do you hear the phrase, “I’m hungry!” ?? It seems like that’s all I hear all. day. long.  One afternoon the kids were extremely hungry. again. and I put together this quick little activity and snack combined. 

We practiced a few skills (letter identification, letter matching, visual scanning, eye-hand coordination, fine motor skills) while we enjoyed a little letter snack!

Kids will love to practice letter matching with alphabet cookies!

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Letter Matching Activity for Kids

I used a sheet of paper and quickly wrote out the lower case letters of the alphabet.  Our snack was a little cup of alphabet cookies.  We matched up the upper case letters to the lower case letters.  This was a great activity for my preschooler.  Little Guy (age 5) was so quick to match the letters (mostly because he wanted to eat them)!  Baby Girl (age 2 and 1/2) had some trouble with identifying the upper case letters, but we haven’t really worked on that yet. This is a great activity to introduce letter identification for younger preschoolers.  The cookie incentive is sweet!

Mom only snuck a few cookies.
This is a fun eye hand coordination activity for kids. Bonus, it's a snack too!

Visual Scanning Activity for Kids

Visual scanning is essential for handwriting skills, puzzles, word searches, mazes, and many many functional tasks.  Scanning a room for a missing sock may be difficult if a child demonstrates difficulty with visual scanning. 
When matching the upper case letters to the lower case letters, the child must scan the whole page in order to search and find the correct letter.  Younger children or those working on visual scanning skills may require modifications to this.  You could fold the page in half, offering only half of the options.

Fine Motor Activity for Kids

Picking up those cookies and laying them flat on the paper is a fun way to practice fine motor skills.  Don’t let those cookies crumble by pinching too hard!  Children will use a tip to tip grasp to pick up the cookies from the table surface, may tuck one or a few cookies into their palms, and transfer the cookies one at a time (hopefully!) into their mouths.  What a great fine motor experience!

Hand-Eye Coordination Activity for Kids

Hand-eye coordination is using the information received through the vision system to coordinate the hands with control, in order to complete a task, such as handwriting or catching a ball.

Don’t have alphabet cookies?  You could also use alphabet pretzels or
alphabet cereal in this activity.

Fine Motor Play with Keys

If you’re a frequent visitor to this blog, you know that we LOVE our fine motor play activities!  We are very into playing with household items and recycled materials (aka FREE stuff) in our play, crafts, and activities.  So when we heard about Still Playing School’s Everyday Fine Motor Materials from A-Z series, we were quick to jump on board.  We’re joining so many other bloggers in 26 activities using everyday household items with one focus: Fine Motor Play for kids! 

Like most homes, we have a junk drawer full of random things.  There seem to be a ton of keys that go to who-knows which lock in this house.  So, what to do with those keys that we may someday need for some unknown locked door? …PLAY with them!

 Fine Motor Play with Keys


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When you have kids, many times it seems like there is more playing with every day household objects than there is of toy playing.  Babies start out by banging pots and pans and reaching for the remote buttons, right?   So why not play with something as simple as real keys?  They are great for fine motor skills.  Hey, there is even a grasp termed “key grasp”!  When the thumb opposes the lateral side of the pointer finger to hold an object (piece of paper, coin, and of course, a key), you are utilizing the “key grasp”. 
We pulled out our supply of mystery keys and got busy playing.  I created a cute little lock from cardboard and the kids had fun locking and unlocking with their keys.  We even pretended to lock up treasures and then unlock with different keys. 

We did a threading activity with pipe cleaners
and keys.  I asked the kids to thread one key on the yellow pipe cleaner, two keys on the orange pipe cleaner, three keys on the blue pipe cleaner, etc. 

This was such a fun way to practice fine motor skills, listening, direction following, and early math.

Baby Girl (age 2 and half) was very into this activity.  Little Guy (age 5) LOVED the cardboard lock.  He locked away all sorts of treasures with it.

Don’t have extra keys in your house?  Use the ones on your key ring.  (Just watch them closely so your house key doesn’t “walk” away!)  Or, you could purchase a box of blank keys and use them in fine motor play!

Looking for more fine motor activities using everyday items?  These are fun and frugal:

Paper Clips | Spoons and Cupcake Tin | Ice Cube Tray | Masking Tape | Golf Tees

Monochromatic Water Bin Color Play

We love playing all kinds of learning through water on the water table.  We’ve played lots of other materials too…sand, nature, and even snow have made their way into our water table.  Recently, we explored a single color with water play in the water table.  Monochromatic learning  through water play is such a great summer play activity, but could be carried over to year round with a little mess-proofing indoors. 
This activity is part of the All Things Kids blogger’s monthly series.  This month we’re talking about Learning with Water Play.  You can see all of the great ideas from the All Things Kids bloggers by checking out the series homepage on All Things Kids.

Learning with Color

Explore a single color in the water bin with this learning through water play activity for kids.

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Monochromatic Water Bin Play

We started with our sand and water table
and filled both sides with water.  We added a little bit of g
rape scented bubbles
for a fun scent and foamy sensory play on one side of the water table.  I blew up a bunch of
purple water balloons and threw those in the water table.  (HINT: Blowing up water balloons can be a beast!  We have a little hand air pump that came from some toy and made it much easier to blow up the water balloons!) You could use any size balloons for this activity, but I wanted small size for our transferring part of the fun. 

I gave the kids a little plastic shovel from our sandbox and showed the kids how to transfer the balloons from side to side in the water table.

It was fun to try to catch the balloons as they scooted around on the water surface.  Transferring the balloons with a shovel is a great way to work on eye-hand coordination while encouraging bilateral hand coordination and crossing midline.  Transferring from left to right is great for pre-readers, too.  Kids need to scan from left to right across the page as they read and working on this skill in pre-readers is a great beginner activity.

We had so much fun talking about the different shades of purple and the term “monochromatic” as we pointed out the different shades.  Our learning with water activity was a great way to spend a hot summer afternoon. 
You may be interested in some of the products that we love and used in this post’s activity:

Easy Shapes School Bus Craft

An easy school bus craft is just what kids need before back to school, along with a little crafting fun!

I don’t want to even think about the end of summer and the start of school.  The summer fun is quickly passing by with long days of outdoor play and water activities.   We’ve got a few of the cousins heading back to school this fall.  A couple on the school bus and a few that will be starting up preschool for the first time.  New classes, new book bags, and new school shoes happen before the summer fun has even ended.  With all of the newness happening, this mama wanted to touch on an old familiar theme with the start of school quickly approaching.  

This school bus craft was a fun way to create while we explored easy shapes.  This was a great craft for my two year old as we talked about the start of school and some easy shapes.

Kids will love to make this school bus craft as a back to school craft that helps kids learn shapes.

Back to School Craft

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Easy shapes school bus craft

School Bus Craft

We started with a few sheets of yellow construction paper,
black construction paper,
white printer paper.  I cut a few simple shapes from the paper.  An older child who is working on scissor skills could cut these shapes.
Building our school bus was fun!  We moved our shapes around until we liked the bus.  This was fun for Big Sister (age 6) as she helped us build the bus and made sure the windows were where she liked them. 
Baby Girl (age 2 and half) worked on her shape identification with this craft.  Big Sister and I would hold up a shape and ask her what it was.  She was loving the shape test!

We glued the shapes in place on our bus when we got it looking like we wanted.  Big Sister used some scrap paper to draw bus stops for our bus.  I love the “baby stop”!

school bus craft for learning shapes and preparing for back to school

                                                        School bus craft and book is great for back to school prep for young kids.

Head to the library and pick up a few of our favorite school bus books to go along with this fun craft:

Painting Toys in the Water Table

Watercolors are such a fun way to explore color and just have fun!  When the kids ask to paint, it’s usually watercolors that they want.  Baby Girl has recently been loving to paint with watercolors.  So, when I pulled out the water colors and the water table, there was a little confusion and a lot of intrigue! 
We painted rubber ducks in the water table for a fun twist on creating art and exploring colors.  The best part was, the easy clean up…right in the water table!

Use watercolors to paint toys in the watertable.  Wash them off when done. So much fun!


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I pulled out a bunch of our rubber ducks
that we have in different sizes and put them in the water table along with watercolors and a few little cups of water.

When the kids saw this, they were very excited….and a little confused.  I showed them how to paint the rubber ducks and mix colors on the toys.  The fun began!

We started out painting some of the rubber ducks all one color, and then mixing in other colors.

Baby Girl painted her rubber ducks her favorite color-purple.

This was such a fun way to paint and explore colors on a hot summer day.  These two were pretty serious about their painting.

Mixing colors on the toys was so much fun!  This rubber duck got a lot of color. 

And this one, not so much.  We learned that less water and more paint made the colors stay put on the toys. 

We had a little audience for our painting activity.   The big kids got a kick out of her rubber duckie pajamas that matched.  SO cute!

When we were finished with our paining, we gave the ducks a little bath in the containers of water.  Perfect for the water table!

We left the paints and the toys out on the water table for a while and came back to painting and rinsing all afternoon.

What other toys can you bring into this painting activity?  I’m thinking we’ll bring this watercolor toy painting activity out again with lots of other toys.   It was a big hit!

Looking for more fun ways to paint?  Stop by and follow along on our Creative Painting board on Pinterest:

S Themed Sensory Bin: sticks, sand, stones

We’ve been on a bit of a sensory bin kick lately.  Summer weather permits tons of outside play and the water bin is the way to go during hot sunny days.  This sensory bin is one in a series that we’ve been working on and will continue to add to over a (probably) loooong time. 

ABC’s of Sensory Bins

We’re hoping to hit all of the letters of the alphabet in our ABC’s of Sensory Bins series.  Each sensory bin is an easy and fun way to play with the kids while focusing on one letter at a time.  Being a sensory bin, it’s a great way to explore textures, language, and now letters too as we play.  Each sensory bin in our series will contain only 2-3 ingredients (simple!) and begin with the same letter.  We’re not going through the alphabet in sequential order, but hopping around.  Each bin will eventually be added to a giant list of the ABC’s of sensory bins.  Come along and play with us.  We’re ready to have some sensory bin fun!

"S" themed sensory bin using basic items.


S themed sensory bin

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We LOVE our Sand and Water Table
.  We’ve used it in SO many
water table activities.  This one was thrown together in a matter of minutes since we still had sand in the water table at the time.  Both sections of the water table were filled with sand and ready for a “S” themed play.
Easy sensory bin with sticks, stones, and sand
We started with a bin full of sand and went on a hunt through the yard for some nice sized sticks.  Some were a little too big and needed to be snapped to fit little hands.  Little Guy liked to help with the snapping.  The old snapping the twigs over the knee trick was a huge hit and we had a pretty big pile of snapped twigs thanks to his handy work!
A couple of handfuls of river rock
to the bin and we were ready for simple sensory bin play!

"S" sensory bin for kids with simple items for basic play.

 Imagination Play in a Sensory Bin

Sand, sticks, and stones made up an easy (SIMPLE) sensory bin ready for imagination and play.  We built paths with the stones, bridges and huts with the sticks, and tunnels through the sand.
Simple "S" sensory bin for pretend play and imagination

Little Guy made a few traps for bad guys.

…And had to add in his dinosaurs for more pretend play fun!

This "S" themed sensory bin uses basic items for pretend play and imagination.

We had a blast with our first simple sensory bin.  Here’s to hoping we get this series up and running with loads of new sensory bins for you to enjoy too!  Looking for more sensory bin fun?  Try one of these ideas:

 You may want to see more of our Sensory Bins here.

This Little Piggy Went to the Market craft

Is there a song or nursery rhyme that is a huge hit in your house?  You know the one that is said over and over (and over) again?  Right now we are on a This Little Piggy Went to the Market kick.  Baby Girl (age 2 and a half) loooooooves This Little Piggy.  She will ask me to do the finger play rhyme on both feet and then both hands again and again.  I’ve even heard her saying it to herself…with lots of adorable mistakes.  It’s beyond cute.  I love when she asks me, “Mom, what does this piggy do?” and points to a toe.  What a cutie!
When we made this piggy craft, Baby Girl very excited.  I told her we were making a This Little Piggy craft and she was so happy!

"This Little Piggy Went to the Market" craft for kids

This Little Piggy Went to the Market craft for Toddlers

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This craft for toddlers is very easy and a great opportunity for some learning, too.  You can talk to your Toddler about circles and sizes (big and little).  Toddlers are learning concepts such as size awareness and you can show them the big and little circles as you build the pigs.

I started with 5 big circles cut from pink construction paper and 15 small circles.  We counted out the big circles together.

I helped Baby Girl fold ten of the small circles in half.  These will be the pigs ears.

Big Sister helped out a little with counting out our piggy ears.

Baby Girl is all about using the glue stick.  This Little Piggy Went to the Market + glue stick
= Baby Girl’s best day ever!  She went crazy gluing on the big circles, ears, and snouts.

Craft idea for This Little Piggy finger play.

After all of the pieces were glued in place, I drew on little faces.  We had fun saying the finger play while using our five little piggys to join in on the fun.  Baby Girl played with these little piggys all day!


Visual Motor Scanning Activity to Color Match

Visual Motor Integration is also known as eye hand coordination.  Essentially, this skill is the ability to coordinate the hand in an effective manner directed by vision.  When relying on visual motor skills, a person coordinates their movements based on what they see.  A child requires effective visual motor skills in order to do so many tasks…forming letters, writing on a line, coloring within lines, cutting along a line, catching a ball, completing puzzles, reading, and so much more. 
This fun (and colorful) activity is easy to create at home and a fun way to work on visual motor integration.  We added a color matching component to our activity, but you can adjust this activity to include what ever best keeps your child’s attention. 

Visual scanning and visual motor color matching activity for kids


Visual Motor Color Matching Activity

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I started by drawing small circles all over a sheet of construction paper.  I used a bunch of different colors that matched the colors of stickers we had.  These rainbow stickers are the perfect size for little fingers to peel and work on fine motor skills.   

Use stickers to color match and work on eye-hand coordiantion, fine motor skills.
I had Baby Girl (aged 2 and a half) peel off the stickers and place them on the circles.  Scanning for the matching color works on those eye-hand coordination abilities and also works on color identification. 
This was also a great way for Little Guy (age 4) to work on his visual motor skills.  He’s working on letter formation and ability to write in a smaller space with better control.  The fine motor and visual motor work in the activity are perfect for the new hand writer.
Eye hand coordination is tested and practiced with this easy color matching activity for kids.

This is such an easy way to work on so many skills.  We’ll be doing this activity again, for sure, with a few modifications.  Instead of matching colors to colored circles, try matching letters, numbers, emotions, and more!

What are other ways you can work on visual motor skills at home?

  • Tic Tack Toe

  • Copying shapes/drawings

  • tracing paper

  • mazes

  • dot to dot pictures

  • pegboard designs

  • copying lite brite designs

  • rolling and catching a ball

  • flashlight tag

Looking for more ideas?  Stop over and follow along on our All Things Vision Pinterest board: