Last week I had a series of posts on fine motor skills. I found this elegant definition from the University of Maryland Medical Center and thought I’d share. Can you see from the definition a relationship to many of the activities we do in class?
Fine motor control is the coordination of muscular, skeletal, and neurological functions to produce small, precise movements. The opposite of fine motor control is gross (large, general) motor control. An example of fine motor control is picking up a small item with index finger and thumb. An example of gross motor control would be waving an arm in greeting.
The development of fine motor control is a process of refining gross motor control . It develops as the neurological system matures.
The level of development of fine motor control in children is used to determine the developmental age of the child. Fine motor skills are developed through time, experience, and knowledge. Fine motor control requires awareness and planning for the execution of a task. It also requires muscle strength, coordination and normal sensation.
Tasks such as stacking blocks, drawing lines or circles, cutting out shapes with scissors, zipping a zipper, folding clothes, and holding and writing with a pencil can occur only if the nervous system matures properly.