With Miss 5 at school full time now and Miss 4 going to kindy 2 – 3 times a week, it has opened up more opportunities for Miss 22 months to have some one on one play with me. While she was napping the other day I laid out a few materials for her to play with when she woke. She had so much fun exploring and playing with the pipe cleaners and beads with the Styrofoam while exercising her fine motor muscles.
What you will need?
You will need pipe cleaners, threading beads (or tubular pasta) and Styrofoam. We got our Styrofoam out of a packing box and I plan many more things for it. It doesn’t matter what shape the foam is either as this adds to the play opportunities.
I just love the look of concentration on Miss 22months face as she threads the pipe cleaner through the hole of the bead. To create mazes we pushed both ends of the pipe cleaner into the Styrofoam with a bead threaded on.
Discovery! Finding that she is able to move the bead along the pipe cleaner and making the standing up pipe cleaners wobble when she pushes them.
The importance of fine motor development
It is important for young children to exercise their fine motor skills. It helps to develop their muscles within their fingers and wrists. It is important for these muscles to be strengthened in early childhood so they are strong enough to hold and control a pencil for writing. Manipulating pipe cleaners and threading beads is an effective way of getting those little muscles the exercise to develop strength.
Other learning benefits of Pipe Cleaner Mazes:
- Spatial awareness – experimenting with shape and space
- Eye and hand coordination
- Fine motor development
- Problem solving and trial and error – over coming challenges
Other FAB Pipe Cleaner and Bead Mazes around the Web – Teach Preschool