Effective Techniques To Help Develop Your Child’s Sensory and Motor Skills

Every parent wants the best for their child. That’s why you invest so much time and effort into reading with them, teaching them, and even enrolling them in the best possible child care. As part of this, most parents will find it useful to discover the effective techniques that help your child to develop their sensory and motor skills.

What Are Motor Skills

Before you start developing your child’s motor skills you should note that motor skills refers to the movement of small muscles in your hands and feet to pick up or move items. The more developed these are the better your child will be at coordinating between their hands/feet and their eyes. It is an important skill in life.

Equally, sensory development allows them to broaden their knowledge of the senses, that is sight, touch, smell, sound, and taste.   

Play Dough

Play dough is a lot of fun as you don’t need to make any definitive objects or even shapes. Of course, it can be sued to help young children learn shapes. But, the best thing about play dough is that it can be stretched, pinched, rolled, and even pulled apart. This gives your child the opportunity to stimulate all their senses and they will need to use their motor skills to manipulate the play dough. 

You may even enjoy playing at the same time. 

Sponges

A sponge is a funny object. It is slightly rough, dry, and can be squeezed but bounces back into shape. Once your child has done this get the sponge wet and get them to repeat the movements. It utilizes their motor skills, helps them get used to different textures, and can even help build strength in their forearms, wrists, and hands. 

Drawing Or Painting

There is little that uses the imagination more than getting your child to draw or paint. They can come up with an array of images to inspire and delight you. The good thing is that it doesn’t matter how good they are at the art. The aim is to get them holding a paintbrush or pencils and use them. It is good for motor skills and their hand-eye coordination will improve when selecting colors. 

You can even make it better for the senses by adding some aromas to the paints, it will certainly make the end result interesting. 

Water Time

Your child is likely to sit for hours with a bowl of water and an eyedropper. They can put their hands in the water and splash, as well as using the eyedropper to suck up, and then squirt, the water. 

It is great for the senses, coordination, and harmless if they put it in their mouth!

Bath Time

You can take water ^play a step further by simply giving your little one a bath. This essential activity is also an opportunity for them to develop their motor and sensory skills. All you need is a few toys that they can pick up and, ideally, a squeezable one that allows them to squirt water at themselves and you. It is the perfect way to practice hand-eye coordination and get a feel for different materials.

Gardening

Gardening, particularly planting and watering plants is a great way to help your child improve their sensory and motor skills. You will also find they love it! Simply let them carry plants, this helps with getting the grip right. Allow them to rub their hands in the soil, it is great for their senses, and talk to them while you are gardening. It can be educational and you never know where it may lead.

Rice Or Pasta Race

This is perfect for hand-eye coordination and motor skills. Simply get four bowls and place some rice or pasta in two of the bowls. Then, get two pairs of plastic tweezers and give one to your child. You can then race to transfer all the rice from one bowl to another. You may be surprised at how much fun it is.

Puzzles

There are plenty of jigsaw puzzles that can be purchased online or in your local store. You’ll find they do puzzles for all age range. Choose one that is appropriate for their age level and current skill. You can then sit together and do the puzzle. Encourage them to pick up the pieces and attempt to put them in position. It is surprising how effective this approach is. 

Using Scissors

Scissors are sharp so make sure you use children’s scissors which present less of a risk to your child. You can draw shapes on paper and encourage your child to cut them out. It is even possible to stick these shapes together to make something that your child can play with. 

Sand Castles

Any kind of play involving sand is a good idea. Sand feels funny in your hands, changes texture when wet, and is generally an unusual substance to play with. Allowing your child to feel it, tip it between cups, and even attempt to make a sandcastle will help their sensory and motor skills. 

Cook Together

A very young child may not be able to help you cook but they can watch and play with the food you are making. This will help them to understand the process and develop better motor skills as they hold and even taste the food. Just make sure they are okay to eat what you have given them!

Final Thoughts

The key to successfully developing your child’s fine motor and sensory skills is partly to use the above techniques and other similar ones that you can think of. But, it is also important to simply play with your child, without getting too hung up on their development. This will allow them to mimic your actions, which use motor skills and you take for granted.

At the same time, you will be creating a bond with your child that will allow you to help them more as they mature. A parental bond encourages a child to explore their surroundings and become more independent because they have confidence that you will always be there for them.