This fine motor activity is one that works on the super small motor skills of the hands. We’ve shared tips and ideas for building precision of grasp and release before, and this is one more way to build those skills, with a math and engineering twist. If your kids are anything like mine, then they love blocks. If I pull out a bin of blocks, then we’ve got ramps, castles, and houses all over the living room floor. They are an imagination booster and it really is so much fun to see where the creativity goes with just a bin of blocks. The OT in me loved this activity for it’s creative math twist and for it’s fine motor power punch!
What is precison of grasp and release?
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Precision in of grasp and release allows us to pick up a specific colored bead from a tray of many colors and place it on a string. We used foam blocks and small balls of clay to practice precision of grasp and release.
Fine Motor Precision Activity
Rolling balls of clay develops the intrinsic muscle strength of the hands. It opens up the thumb web space and encourages flexion of the interphalangeal joints in the fingers. Once we had rolled a collection of small clay balls, we used them to work on precision grasp and release with the foam blocks.
One area that my kids have discussed in both kindergarten and second grade this year is the term vertices. We talked about the number of vertices on different shapes and placed a small clay ball on each vertice. Carefully placing the clay on each corner required precision to pick up the clay and to place it precisely on the corner.
Math Engineering Activity
Once we had each corner covered with clay, we thought it would be fun to engineer a tower. It was fun to explore the different ways we could build the towers using graded controlled movements to prevent the whole tower from falling.
This was such a fun exercise in fine motor skills and one we’ll be doing again!
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