Pre-Writing Lines Fine Motor Activity

This prewriting strokes activity targets the motor plan needed for forming prewriting lines. In this blog post, you’ll find a creative way to target pre-writing strokes using a hands-on activity. Creative ways to practice handwriting can be the trick for helping kids write with better legibility.  But what if you are starting at the very beginning?  Preschool kids who are working on pre-writing lines can use creative techniques, too!  Be sure to check out this resource on pre-writing skills that need to be developed before handwriting and using a pencil is possible.

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Pre-writing strokes activity

Pre-Writing Strokes

We have covered pre-writing strokes in detail in our blog posts covering this developmental progression, so adding this particular activity idea to your toolbox just adds an additional way to work on the pre-writing strokes that young children need prior to writing skills are established.

This pre-writing lines activity is a winner because it’s a novel way to target strength and motor planning without using worksheets.

Copying the straight lines, crosses, and circles over and over again can become a little boring for preschoolers.  Try this creative way to practice pre-writing lines while working on fine motor skills with preschoolers.

By targeting the motor plan to create pre-writing strokes, we can support young children in the visual motor integration needed for more precision, crossing midline, and then the more complex pencil control needed for letter formation.

What are pre-writing Strokes?

We cover pre-writing lines in more detail here in this pre writing strokes PDF. 

Pre-writing strokes include:

  • Horizontal line
  • Vertical line
  • Circle
  • Cross
  • Square
  • Diagonal Lines
  • “X” Shape
  • Triangle

Pre-writing lines are an important step for preschool-aged kids and for developing a basis for proper letter formation.  Establishing pre-writing lines allow kids to strengthen hand muscles, promote pencil strokes needed for letters, and improve pencil control.  


Try this pre-writing lines fine motor activity with preschoolers.

Pre-Writing Lines Activity 

This post contains affiliate links. 
You’ll need just three items for this activity:
This pre-writing lines fine motor activity can help kids improve hand strength while promoting a tripod grasp.  I pulled out our stash of pencil eraser toppers (affiliate link) and a handful of pony beads (affiliate link). 


Try this pre-writing lines fine motor activity with preschoolers.
1. Kids can start the activity by pushing the pony beads (affiliate link) into the eraser toppers (affiliate link). This is a strengthening activity in itself, allowing children to strengthen their intrinsic muscles which help with arch development.  
This is important for proper pencil grasp and for smaller controlled pencil motions when writing letters. 
2. You will need to add the pony beads (affiliate link) to the erasers to provide a stable eraser (affiliate link) when pinching.  Without the pony beads (affiliate link), kids will pinch the eraser too much and it will squash closed.
3. Next, with a pencil, draw pre-writing strokes on a piece of paper.  For younger children, you can form the lines more lightly.  For older kids, or those who need to address strengthening issues, draw the lines a little darker. 
Here is another pre-writing lines activity kids will love as well.
4. Use a marker to draw a starting dot and ending dot.  Form the pencil line between the dots.  The dots provide a starting and ending point for the child to trace the pencil line.  


5. While the child is erasing the pre-writing lines, be sure to provide verbal and visual cues to ensure proper direction formation.

Try this pre-writing lines fine motor activity with preschoolers.
Try this pre-writing lines fine motor activity with preschoolers.

Looking for more ways to address handwriting needs? Try these:

Try this pre-writing lines fine motor activity with preschoolers.



Try this pre-writing lines fine motor activity with preschoolers.


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Child's hand holding a pencil top eraser with beads inside. Text reads pre-writing strokes activity