Summer Developmental Activity Ideas

All of these activities are designed to be accompanied by an adult. Please do not leave your children alone in doing any of the activities below. I have not included age recommendations and some of the activity ideas include using small pieces. Do not use small pieces when working with children 3 years old and younger that could pose a choking hazard.

Gross Motor Activities for Summer
These are just some suggestions, I’m sure you can think of more based on your child’s likes and interests. These also double as excellent ideas to improve bilateral coordination skills.

– Wheelbarrow walking
– Crab Walking
– Bear Walking
– Push ups
– Sit ups
– Crunches
– Scooter board races
– Laying on their stomachs on the scooter board, therapy ball, or swing
– Shooting baskets
– Volley ball
– Swimming
– Playing with yo-yo’s
– Jump Rope
– Riding a bike
– Jumping on a trampoline
– Swinging
– Horse back riding

Fine Motor Activities for Summer
Bilateral Coordination

– Roll dough with a rolling pin
– Hand clapping games
– Squeeze objects (i.e. glue) with both hands
– Use both arms to twirl streamers or scarves
– Build with building blocks
– Trace patterns on paper
– Draw a picture using stensils
– Tear lettuce into pieces to make a salad
– Spread icing on cookies, cakes, etc.

Finger Dexterity

– Press cookie cutters into dough or putty
– Play with finger puppets
– Play pick-up sticks games
– Screw and unscrew small lids, nuts or bolts
– Fold paper (i.e. origami, airplanes etc)
– Hold a handful of marbles, transferring one at a time into a container
– Draw shapes and write words in a variety of mediums (shaving cream, sand, finger paint, hair gel etc).
– Draw designs on a Etch-A-Sketch board
– Play board games with small pieces to manipulate
– Use fingers to sprinkle toppings on food (sprinkles, shredded cheese).

Grip Strength

– Squeeze putty, flour sifter, plastic squeeze bottles
– Squeeze juice from a lemon or orange
– Squeeze a spray bottle (water plants, clean windows)
– Stir batter in a bowl
– Staple papers together with a small stapler
– Use a hole punch to make dots or creative shapes

Pinch Strength

– Peel stickers off surfaces
– Peel fruit (lemons, oranges etc)
– Turn keys in a lock
– Deal cards
– Use tongs to pick up small objects
– Spin tops
– Play with wind-up toys
– Tear paper for art projects
– Build with small blocks
– Roll small amounts of putty, play dough, into balls between fingers
– Lacing Cards
– Pick up small objects with fingers and place into containers (beans, cereal, corn kernels)
– Place coins into a bank or small slit in a lid.
– Pop bubbles on bubble wrap
– Use small rubber stamps to create a picture
– String beads to make a necklace
– Pinch clothespins (laundry, games etc)

Visual Motor Activities for Summer
Visual Perception:

– Copy patterns/pictures using shapes, pegs etc.
– Put together models
– Dot-to-dots
– Mazes
– Hidden picture searches
– Word searches
– Put puzzles together
– Use changeable markers to improve tracing skills

Scissor Skills

– Simulate cutting motions by transferring objects with bubble tongs
– Cut straws into small pieces and string to make a necklace
– Cut play dough/putty/clay
– Cut shapes out of foam
– Cut pictures from magazines or cereal boxes

I would try and incorporate a few a day. That way you are working on the same skill in many different ways (and your kids won’t get bored!)

Have a  great summer holiday!

Tyla x

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