Fine Motor Skills

Activities for Isolating Finger Movements

Finger isolation is where your child can move each finger one at a time. Babies move their fingers all at the same time, however, as they develop, they start learning how to move each finger individually. Isolating finger movements is essential in the development of fine motor skills. Having this ability contributes to efficient typing on a keyboard, grasping a pencil, typing shoelaces and other day-to-day living skills.

Isolating finger movements is an important step to master various fine motor skills. Activities for isolating finger movements require isolated movements of your child’s fingers and finger dexterity. Some types of activities for isolating finger movements are listed below.

  1. Have your child play games that have them press the icons on a tablet or smartphone. One such game to help with this is the Peekaboo Barn app, you’ll find in the App Store.
  2. Tell your child to make a fist. Now beginning with their thumb, have them straighten out one finger at a time.
  3. Have them play with finger puppets which encourages them to use one finger at a time.
  4. Have them finger paint.
  5. Have them play with clay. Tell them to pinch pieces of the clay off using their index fingers and thumb. 
  6. Have them help you spray the windows to clean or water the plants with a spray bottle. Add in food coloring so your child can make colorful pictures in the snow.
  7. Have them play with water guns outdoors on a summer day or in the bathtub.

Your child’s pediatric occupational therapist will also work with them and have them participate in isolating finger movement activities. They can give you an idea of other activities you can do for this particular skill.

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