Fine Motor Skills

Best Toys to Promote Fine Motor Skills in Children

Play is hard work! Toys and puzzles help your child develop fine motor skills. It might look like your giggling toddler is engaged in pointless, but enjoyable busyness. Actually, she’s hard at work with the business of developing physical, cognitive, and emotional skills appropriate for her age.

Early pediatric development involves your child learning about her body and the physical world around her. In the process, she is laying the foundation for the activities that will take her through to adulthood.

Here’s a look at several types of toys that are useful and fun.


All types of puzzles fascinate youngsters. The most basic is the simple knobbed puzzles that outline common shapes and fit into a board with the corresponding cutout. Later, children enjoy more complex puzzles with silhouettes of objects they recognize. Eventually they can handle simple jigsaw puzzles.

All types of puzzles develop hand-eye coordination. Puzzles help children understand and train their bodies to relate what their hands do to what they see with their eyes.

Staff who work in pediatric occupational therapy recognize how important this is for toddler. Therapists use a variety of toys in their work to stimulate development while keeping children engaged.

Puzzles help them advance their fine motor skills, those that need precise, small movements, and which lead eventually to good handwriting and the ability to type.

Arts and Crafts

Boards that let children thread lacing into large openings promotes fine motor skills and visual coordination. Playing with wax colored string is another good toy. It is fun, colorful, and challenging.

Children enjoy folding and creasing paper in a variety of shapes. They strengthen and learn to use the small muscles in their hands and fingers.

Wind-Up Toys

Every child, and most adults, love wind-up toys. They can be simple or complex. Making up stories about them is easy because many are colorful cartoon characters. These toys develop dexterity and strengthen tiny fingers and hands.

Take a tip from people who know, pediatric occupational therapists. Your children need the stimulation and physical engagement with an array of toys in order to develop their fine motor skills.

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