Motor development is all about helping your child to grow and develop in healthy ways. But for many, it’s something that they think about only in the early years of infancy and toddlerhood. As children enter into school you’re less likely to devote a lot of time and attention to their motor development, but it doesn’t stop being important.
Why it Matters
When your children are young you typically focus on what are considered ‘gross’ motor skills. These are activities that use larger muscles such as walking, crawling, running, and swimming. These types of skills are ones that your little one will develop from infancy onward.
As they get older, however, it’s important that they are able to refine their control over smaller muscle groups as well. These are motor development skills that they will learn as they start preschool and beyond. Things like writing and feeding themselves are examples of fine motor skills.
By developing each of these different kinds of motor skills, children start to learn more about how to take care of themselves and how to handle different tasks.
What Are Motor Development Skills?
Motor development skills can include a number of different abilities including:
- Picking up items/food
By working with your child on each of these skills you are helping to prepare them for their future. And you are definitely helping to foster some important skills in them as well, ones that are outside of the obvious.
What They Learn
When your child learns how to dress themselves they are learning more than just how to put clothes on without your intervention. They’re developing self-esteem because they can take care of the task themselves. They’re learning about individuality and they’re developing their own personality.
When your child learns how to walk they’re learning how to get from one place to another. But they’re also setting the stage for learning how to run, to dance, to climb, and so much more. These additional skills give them more freedom and allow them to have fun in entirely new ways.
Developing these types of motor skills also encourages your child to continue learning new things by showing them that they are smart, capable, and strong.
It’s important for everyone in your child’s life to work with them to develop these types of skills. Their motor development does not stop when they enter school. And your involvement in their continued growth definitely doesn’t either. Instead, make sure that you’re working with your child as much as possible to learn new things and refine the skills that they have.
Motor development in preschoolers is just as important, if not more so, than similar development in younger children.