During the period of early childhood, mastering fine motor skills is a very important process needed for physical and cognitive development. However, for a number of different reasons, there are some children who do not develop at the same pace as an average child. It is important for parents and physicians to recognize children who are not on track developmentally because the earlier the cause of the delay can be determined, the earlier parents can start working with the child to correct or minimize these deficits. Often, the earlier the children begins to work on their developmental deficits, the greater the advancements they can make.
By the age of three, a child should be able to do the following:
- Use a spoon by themselves
- Draw a vertical and horizontal line
- String large beads
- Snip paper with scissors
- Roll clay or play dough into a “snake”
Conduct an Internet search using the two phrases listed below. Your results will help you better understand the kind of milestones that are used to assess the development of fine motor skills in young children.
- Fine motor skills milestones
- Child development milestones
Using the module readings, the Argosy University online library resources, and the Internet, research observational and motor learning and activities that can be used to help develop motor skills. Then, address the following:
- Describe in detail how a young child’s fine motor skills are developed—making sure to include the theory of motor-skill learning that best fits this situation.
- Explain whether any motor tasks or skills can be accomplished via observational learning. Justify your response.
- Now, consider a situation in which a young child (3–4 years old) is developmentally delayed in fine motor skill development. Create a strategy which would help the child strengthen his or her fine motor skills.
- You can find a number of activities online which purport to help develop these skills. From a theoretical viewpoint, be sure to explain how these activities will aid a child’s fine motor skill development. Make sure that you reference at least one peer-reviewed article in addition to any Web sites you find and describe these activities as part of your development strategy.