Fine motor Skills activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers

Motor Development in kids

Lot of us are unaware of small daily life activities which help toddlers to Pre-schoolers in their Fine Motor skills Development. Involving kids in daily routine activities helps tons in motor development and learning. Rather we are not even aware of what is Fine motor development & how it impacts our child’s development.

What is Fine Motor Skill?

Fine motor skill involves the coordination of small muscles, mainly hands, fingers, with eyes and brain. It is basically learning to synchronize the things out at a time. The importance of development of Fine motor skills can be understood from the fact that they have a big impact on Intellect & Human development. When an infant becomes a toddler, he/she has experienced better grasping and ever growing exploration of surrounding things. This is when a child needs to be introduced to small plays involving the Fine motor development and should be continued till they turn 5. Post age of 5, most of the fine motor skills have been developed.

While we search for various plays here & there involving such developments, but we rarely think of small activities which can be done at home.

Let’s get onto some home- based activities promoting Fine Motor Development in a child from 1year – 5years!

Here are some Fine motor Skills activities for Toddlers and Preschoolers :

1. Turn and Twist Bottle

Materials required : Old Shampoo, oil, cream, lotion’s empty and clean bottles. Simple and ample are available at home isn’t it?

What to do : A Child can unscrew and screw lids & repeat it, as a fun game along with development. 

2. Button Play

Materials required : Old shirts with big, medium and small buttons. 

Press button shirts

Hook Shirts

What to do : Child can button and unbutton the garments. Yes, don’t expect a year old to do this. Kids usually button and un-button by 3years. But it really is very helpful in fine skills & kids enjoy doing it.

3. Zipper Use

This is one of the favorite activity of a kid & I see parents stopping the small kids to do it from the fear of deforming of the bag chains. So, why not do it as an activity?

Materials required : Old Jackets, Old Bags, Old pouches

What to do : Child can practice zipping and unzipping and believe me they’ll love doing it. Just ensure that you give them some old stuff so that it doesn’t bothers mama’s even if ruined;).

4. Velcro On and Off

Let them self – help while going out!

Materials required : Old/New Clean Shoes

What to do : Child can practice sticking and pulling off Velcro on his self. This is a very much doable even by a 2 -2.5year old (as my kid used to do it). Kids enjoy wearing it by themselves.

5. Comb Dolls Hair

Didn’t we used to do it when we were young with our dolls? Then I didn’t knew that it helped so much developing my muscles.

Materials required : Old/New Doll, Wool in long clusters

What to do : Child can make simple braids or use clips and bands to dress up their doll beautifully.

6. Tie Shoe Laces

Materials required : Old/New Clean Shoes

What to do : Child can learn to make bows and tie laces of their own shoes. Even if you child doesn’t have such shoes, give him a pair of old clean dad’s shoes to try hands on. This can be worked when a kid is 3years or more.

7. Origami and paper Folding

Materials required : Coloured paper in square shapes

What to do : Child should fold it to make different shapes and slowly some objects as small boats or Tipi-Tipi-Top. By this a child will also learn the colours & shapes aside with the development.

8. Play Dough

Ahh, My 2.11year old son is insane over it!

Materials required : Knead Wheat flour (Atta/Maida) with oil + salt + water. Add food colours and essence to make it beautifully coloured & with fragrance.

What to do : Child can make shapes, use a rolling pin, blunt cookie shape cutters and carve out some interesting stuff. This not only enhances their imagination but is a very important activity for Fine skill development. 

9. Sorting

Materials required : Pebbles, Stones, Buttons, mixed blocks

What to do : As your child to sort as per colour or shapes or sizes. This will involve hand eye coordination & will even help in memory development.

10. Chalk And Board

Who doesn’t loves this chalk and board game from kids to adults;). Simple, creative activity.

Materials required : Board & Coloured Chalk

What to do : Scribbling, writing, drawing and all of your child’s imagination. Be pleased to what he makes! 

11. Sand Play in a Tub

Materials required : Sand and Tub

Make sand moist so that it does not fly in the eyes and helps in better consistent structures made out of it.

What to do : Child can play with shape sorters, blunt cookie cutters, small bowls. They can make some different shapes, house, castles, pots or anything they like. This all deals into imagination, creativity and Fine motor skill development.

12. Memory Game

Materials required : Place various day to day objects in a tray.

What to do : Let child see the objects. Give him some minutes to look at them properly and tell him to be ready for the play. The next step will be to cover those objects and ask what all did you see. Let your child think & speak out. Isn’t it easy & interesting for the child?

13. Cleaning the Cupboards

Materials required : Cupboard, drawer

What to do : Let the child dust the drawer/cupboard and keeps back things on his own. Why not do this with his own cupboard. This way he will learn to keep things in a proper manner along with must development.

14. Pouring water

That’s a messy task I know, but let’s do it.

Materials required : Small jug and glass

Tray /Tub to allow the spilling

What to do : Child pours water from jug to glass and so forth. Let the spillage be in the tray or tub so that you have a comfortable time mama.

15. Guess the Object

Materials required : Put various day to day objects in a pouch

What to do : Let the child put hand inside the pouch and the feel objects. let him guess the object names on his own. DO give him 2-3 lifelines to rectify initially. You’ll all enjoy this activity with child for sure.

Hope you all enjoyed reading some really easy activities for fine motor skills development.

Fine Motor skills development in Kids


Quest to live the life surrounded with the charming little bundle's of joy. When they speak, I sing, When they smile, I rejoice , When they hug, I hold them never to lose, Such is my passion for these Gifts of God.This love urged me to navigate separately from my Travel Blog & establish an "All-In-One" Blog for budding mothers. Mum's have multi-tasked this world ,with all her professional commitments , she still makes an extra effort to be a loving, caring and be an intellectual mommy! Cheers, for me too come from the same fraternity, post having a superb academics & close to 8 years of professional experience and blessed with a little one "who has indeed changed my life from Autumn to Spring";)

This Post Has 47 Comments

  1. I do not have children but this post explains the motor skills that are gained from playing with all of the toddler toys I remembered! How the human mind learns and grows is magnificent!

    1. Jhilmil

      So truly commented..Human mind is magnificent

  2. beautybyjellybean

    These are great ideas! I do not have kids yet, but I will share this with my sister for my niece.

  3. Amber

    I like these ideas. My kids loved to play in sand. They also enjoyed Play-Doh. Oh, and for a while, my son was really into making origami.

    1. Jhilmil

      wow, gives me a good feel of creative kids you have!!

  4. jadoreledecor

    I love all of these activities. My niece is only four months, but I look forward to helping her develop her motor skills soon.

  5. I love the example of fine motor skills that you used. I don’t have small children but will pass this information on.

  6. Diana

    These are awesome idea! Thanks for sharing! I love that you included every day things like tying shoes and zippers, along with fun things like play dough!

    1. Jhilmil

      Yea, that was the motive, kids play, become independent & then they all help in development.. Complete package for kids:)

  7. Jenna

    Wow! I don’t have any little ones, but it’s crazy how simple activities we don’t think much of can be so important!

  8. Adeyemisi

    These things make me want to really have kids? the fun and everything and even learning new ways of doing cool stuffs… Thanks jhim for d post

    1. Jhilmil

      ha ha, have them & then implement.. They give us the joy of small things for sure!

  9. Kate

    These are great ideas! Thank you for sharing!

  10. Lorraine M

    I am not a parent however I do think it is critical that motor skills are developed in toddlers. I’ll be sure to share this post.

  11. taylermorrell

    These are some great ideas and activities for toddlers!

  12. Life with Larissa

    I’m hanging out with 3 year old cousin this weekend! She loves doing new things, so I’ll definitely have to try some of these with her.

    1. Jhilmil

      That’s great, how did your weekend go?

  13. sassi479

    I am an elementary teacher but taught toddlers and preschool for years before I taught in public schools. All of these ideas are really great and spot on. I have a 1 year old so I’ll keep this as a reminder for some upcoming play and practice with fine motor skills. Thanks for sharing! I’m sure this was really helpful to many mamas.

    1. Jhilmil

      Great to know that you have a good exp of teaching. They’ll for sure help many mamas with nearly zero cost:)

  14. Erin Creeks

    I never thought about fine motor skill development before. I dont have kids but these activities seem like a great idea for overall mental development and problem solving also. ?

    1. Jhilmil

      Oh yes they do, you can share with your mommy friends:)

  15. Kiley Smith

    These are great ideas. My son has a hard time cutting with scissors so I will have to give some of these a try!

    1. Jhilmil

      Oh yes, do try & share with me, what worked out:)

  16. elenasts

    These are all great ideas that I can use to play with my nephew and niece. I am sure they will love it.

    1. Jhilmil

      Great to know that play and development will go together!

  17. Alethea

    Thanks for sharing! These activities seem like all fun ways for kids to learn fine motor skills.

  18. Shell

    These are fun activities for fine motor skills !!

  19. Rhonda

    These are great! Can’t go wrong with Play-Doh.

  20. vishalgmr1971

    This is a nice way to prepare kids for success. I think if kids at this age are taught these origami, play dough and shoe laces etc. at early age, their curiosity for other things/activities which is excellent.

    1. Jhilmil

      That’s true Vishal! Thanks for coming by!

  21. Mommy Dil

    Thank you so much gor these. Yay! Ideas done for the summer!

  22. these are excellent fine motor skills activities-we are working on opening bottles now, which actually only took about one time…which is scary lol

  23. Blair Villanueva

    These simple exercise helps. I noticed these when we still have baby at home and how my Mom taught my sister her motor skills. Some babies are delayed, others are advanced!

  24. Isabelle Weber

    Oohh this is going to come in handy for my little boy in a couple more years! Great ideas that I’ll need to keep in mind for then 🙂

  25. theterrificfive

    You just motivated me to look into fine motor skills activities for my baby. With two it’s so hard to focus on the little one. Love your ideas and suggestions!!!

  26. These are all such great ways to help you child develop skills that last and help them throughout their development. I remember each of my kiddies having dolls that had buttons, zippers, snaps etc. for the to practice with.

  27. aniahalama

    I used to love oragami as a child, I found it super soothing. Some of these other ideas are great too. What cchild doesn’t love playdoh!

  28. Nina

    I remember button play toys from when I was a kid. These are all great tips and things that you could easily just turn into a game.

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