Learning to cut with scissors is not as simple as it seems. As children master this skill, it’s a full-body task to get the hands and fingers working with precision. The back, shoulders and arms must be stable, feet must be on the floor, and hips must be in neutral. The eyes need to focus on and the brain needs to process what both hands are doing – one cutting and the other holding the paper. And the finger muscles themselves need to work in isolation.
Phew! Fortunately, you can make the development of pre-scissor skills fun and successful using these activities:
- Crawling over and under objects, doing animal walks or walking on the hands. These help require upper-extremity weight bearing.
- Also good for strengthening upper-extremity muscles are playing on monkey bars, climbing rocks and playing tug of war.
- Paper activities including tearing paper into small pieces and scrunching tissue into small balls.
- Lacing activities.
- Playing with clay.
- Using hole or paper punchers.
- Using tweezers and tongs to pick up small objects like cotton balls or dried macaroni.
- Stringing beads or macaroni.
- Completing puzzles.
- Using clothes pins to strengthen the small muscles of the hand.
Visit www.YourTherapySource.com for inexpensive therapy tools to help you develop engaging activities as you work on pre-scissor skills. Start with card stock or light cardboard and progress to paper.
An EBook priced at $5.99 includes 22 lacing card pictures and 26 letter lacing cards to cut, color, hole punch and lace. Lacing card activities promote the development of fine motor and visual skills. Large, child-friendly cards are available in a wide range of themes including a snowman, teddy bear, Valentine card, shamrock, sunflower, flag picture, beach scene, chalkboard, pumpkin, 26 capital letters and more.
Creative Clay Activities
This EBook is priced at $4.99. It features activities that encourage tactile and proprioceptive input, fine motor skills, finger and hand muscle strengthening, visual motor skills, math skills and letter formation. Use clay or play dough to play games including charades, snake in the woods or four in a row. Have a clay scavenger hunt or use the 26 alphabet sheets to promote tactile kinesthetic awareness of letters.
Clay Play Mats
Priced at $2.99, this collection of six mats encourage hand muscle strengthening, fine motor skills, visual memory, and counting and number identification. Activities include lollipop counting; a clay bakery where you roll balls of clay with a rolling pin; hammer clay, which involves making clay balls and using a hammer to insert clay nails; a pancake breakfast, where you flatten balls into the correct number of pancakes, and a clay memory game.
Make Your Own Mobiles
This Ebook is priced at $4.99. With contains patterns for 20 mobiles, it encourages scissor use, motor and visual skills and visual perceptual skills. Once the mobiles are printed, children can cut, hole punch, lace and tie them. Included are a wide variety of seasonal, holiday and color patterns.
Clothes Pin Collection
You can purchase this in an electronic version for $2.99 or a print version for $4.99. Each page features a large circle with various themes and small squares for children to attach clothes pins. The alphabet, number and multiple-choice options are great for use with tactile learners, as well as students with ADHD or dysgraphia.
For additional resources to assist in your school-based therapy practice, read our related posts or contact Cobb Pediatric Therapy Services today. And here’s to a great school year!