In our classes, we regularly have children who find handwriting challenging and, now that they are in years five and six, have been through endless practice lessons, interventions and groups. Whilst we still find the traditional copying methodology has a place, we are always on the look out for more engaging ways of getting children to practise their fine motor control.
Firstly, we used origami with the children. We gave them some easier models to fold using some cheap, but lovely paper from Tiger. As our inspiration, we used some of the characters from the Origami Yoda series, which also provides simple instructions to follow in creating some of the characters from the novel. This activity allows the children to practise precision and small hand and finger movements.
|Image credit: 'Caesar' (Edges traced in Inkscape using a self-taken photo.) GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html|
Next, we used some larger dot-to-dots books from this series of books (although some can also be found here). As they go from 1-1000, they are extremely complicated and need great control to complete. The children loved these and spent a significant amount of time trying to guess what the picture was.
On the Discovery Education website we found some complicated mazes (impossible according to one pupil). Again these took a significant amount of control to finish successfully.
Most recently, we gave the children free rein to create a sculpture out of some older, and harder, modelling clay. The children loved the creativity of this task and, because of how tough it was, needed the children to strengthen their hand muscles in order to get the clay pliable,
|Image Credit: Dan Bollinger (Own work) CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0), via Wikimedia Commons|