Tuesday, July 19, 2011

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Ways to Strengthen Finger and Hand Muscles

Before your preschooler can write or cut a lot, she will need strong little muscles in her fingers and hand.  Here are five fun exercises she can enjoy...and you can enjoy the fact that you're getting her ready for kindergarten!

1.  Drawing.  Any kind of coloring activity strengthens the muscles that hold the pencil...or crayon, marker, paintbrush, etc.  If you really don't like messes, try letting your child "paint" with water on the sidewalk outside.

2.  Easy cutting.  Let your child use scissors to cut through play-dough, yarn, and other soft (but safe!) items.

3.  Hard cutting.  Many preschoolers enjoy the challenge of cutting through a piece of cardboard or a paper plate, especially if they get to use "big scissors."  Remember to supervise closely.

4.  Sewing cards.  Punch holes around a picture on the back of a cereal box and let your child thread a shoelace through the holes.

5.  Piano.  You don't have to read music to enjoy making up a song!  Letting individual fingers press keys is great exercise!

The key is to keep it fun!  Let your child enjoy getting stronger and she will enjoy writing when the time comes.