Fun ways to encourage motor skills

Motor skills are actions that involve your young child using their muscles. Gross motor skills are bigger actions using arms and feet, such as crawling, running and jumping. Smaller actions are known as fine motor skills, like picking things up between a finger and thumb or wiggling toes. Your child will learn motor skills as part of their natural development, but there are lots of fun ways you can encourage them too.

Fun ways to encourage motor skills

Use kitchen tongs as a grabby instrument to make tidying toys away fun. This will help your child’s fine motor skills as well as help you with the mess.


Syringes (like you get with infant medicines) are a fun way to experiment with water and hone skills of gripping and controlling muscles in their hands. Show them how to suck up water and practice squirting it out at different speeds.


Stickers are great fun and an amazing motor activity. Let your little one try and peel the stickers off the sheet and use hand control to place it on paper or in a sticker book.


Threading activities are great for developing fine motor skills, as well as being a nice calm activity. Use pasta tubes and thread them onto string or cut straws into smaller pieces to thread and make into a necklace.


Stacking foam blocks in water is great fun and encourages concentration and hand-eye co-ordination. Foam is perfect to use in water because it floats and the water acts like glue, making the blocks stick to each other.