How to Improve Fine Motor Skills
The earliest form of writing begins with scribbling. This is usually when a child is a toddler. Over time it becomes more refined as a child learns to first write letters, then words and finally sentences. Much of their ability to write is due to the development of their fine motor skills. Should these skills be lacking, it can lead to the inability to write legibly. Fortunately, there are many things parents can do to help improve these skills.
Find some old newspapers and magazines and have your child take turns both cutting and tearing them up. This may seem rather juvenile if the child is in their teens. It can be made more interesting by providing magazines with pictures of things the teen has an interest in. Once the pictures are cut out, you can provide a poster board where the pictures can be glued. When it dries they can hang it up in their bedroom.
Get some Play-Doh and, with the use of the fingers only, let the kid's imagination run wild. Playing with Legos is a good way to help improve fine motor skills. There are many different themed kits to choose from including Star Wars, Harry Potter, SpongeBob SquarePants, Pirates of the Caribbean and Toy Story. Choosing a kit should reflect on the age and interests of the person who will be using it. Additional suggestions include jigsaw puzzles and jewelry making kits. Overall, the basic idea is to find something small a kid can play with.
There are other factors that can contribute to problematic writing skills including conditions such as poor visual conception and lack of proper trunk control. If the handwriting problem seems as simple as the incorrect positioning of holding a pencil, lack of practice or the need to improve fine motor skills, then try to help your child with some of the suggestions listed above.
However, if there seems to be any type of medical condition associated with the lack of handwriting skills, it is best to consult with your child's physician. In addition, if you have older children, writing help is available at your child's school. Contact the school to find out what type of programs they have that can aid in helping to develop handwriting skills. Keep in mind that good writing skills reinforce good reading skills.
For one reason or another, not all kids can have perfect penmanship. Nevertheless, there are things that parents can do to help their children develop better writing skills.