The physical health and development domain (as stated by the California Department of Education) includes three elements: gross motor skills, fine motor skills, and health status and practices. Each of these elements supports children’s overall health and physical fitness and can enhance a child’s progress in other domains. For example, gross motor skills lead to growing confidence and pride in accomplishments (social and emotional development, self-concept).
Children use their fine motor skills to experiment with writing tools and materials (literacy, early writing). Fine motor skills involve use of the small muscles found in individual body parts, especially those in the hands and feet. Children use their fine motor skills to grasp, hold, and manipulate small objects and tools. As they gain eye-hand coordination, they learn to direct the movements of their fingers, hands, and wrists to perform more complex tasks.
With access to appropriate materials and activities, children can practice and refine both their fine and gross motor skills during a variety of experiences and while performing self-help routines. To encourage this behavior we do various cutting activities, just like today’s dot and cut! We started out with four blank sheets of paper that we drew shapes on; a spiral which your little ones dotted with blue paint.
The dotting in itself is a fine motor skill because students have to aim their dots onto the spiral. Once the dots were dry, we got a scissors out to practice our cutting. Students either cut along the lines drawn or from dot to dot which ever was easier and grabbed their fancy!