Hand-eye coordination is an essential motor skill that helps children with perception. It develops over the early years – which is why parents should encourage their children to perform certain games and activities to improve it.
In a nutshell, hand-eye coordination is when a child’s eyes and hands work together with speed and accuracy – allowing the child to perform tasks that require their hands to be guided by their eyes. Certain activities – like catching a ball – require well-developed hand-eye coordination.
Hand-eye coordination is not only an essential skill in everyday life; children also need it to play sports, learn how to read and write, and tie their shoelaces.
Activities to Improve Your Child’s Hand-Eye Coordination
Games and activities that simultaneously engage a child’s hands, eyes, and brain are excellent for developing hand-eye coordination.
If you do just one activity per day with your child, you’ll be setting them on the right path to refined motor skills and hand-eye coordination development.
1. Skittles and Darts
Skittles and darts are excellent activities for developing hand-eye coordination because they require speed and accuracy. You can purchase child-friendly nerf guns walmart. Take turns with target practice by stacking plastic cups and trying to shoot them over with the darts.
You can purchase a set of skittles or make your own out of large plastic bottles filled with water and paint them different colors. As your child becomes more accurate when knocking the skittles over with a ball, decrease the size of the skittles and ball.
2. Threading and Lacing
Any activity that incorporates threading and lacing is great for developing fine motor skills because it requires small, controlled movements that coordinate the eyes and fingers. In fact, the delicate movements needed for lacing and threading are perfect for improving hand-eye coordination and spatial perception.
You can make your own lacing activities from cardboard cutouts with holes punched through them, or you can purchase a set of lacing cards. Threading beads onto plain pieces of string also requires careful fingerwork – if you have dry macaroni lying around, why not make a game of threading the pasta onto a string to make a necklace?
Building puzzles is one of the best things your child can do to improve their hand-eye coordination. Puzzles also build problem-solving, shape recognition, gross and fine motor, attention, and logic skills.
Wooden puzzles are firm favorites among parents because they are sturdy enough to last forever. Start with 12-piece jigsaw puzzles for young preschoolers and progress to 24 or 48-piece puzzles with smaller pieces. Other puzzle games to try are shape sorters, shape puzzles, and peg puzzles.
4. Skipping Rope
Although skipping may be challenging for children to master, it is excellent for building a child’s coordination.
Through skipping, children don’t just have to learn to coordinate both sides of their bodies and alternate their legs – they also have to aim their jumps and move the skipping rope.
The simple task of drawing teaches children how to use their eyes and fingers together to create something. Drawing is highly beneficial for a child’s hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills, so it should be practiced every day.
Provide your child with different mediums and tools – such as wax crayons, pencils, paint, finger paints, paper, cardboard, etc. – so they can have a more textural experience.
6. Building with Blocks and Lego
Wooden building blocks and Legos are excellent for developing fine motor skills, coordination, and increasing attention span.
A simple set of wooden building blocks is an essential toy for children. It will provide hours of fun, imagination, creativity, problem-solving, and entertainment. Instead of buying cheap plastic blocks, invest in sturdy wooden blocks or Legos that will last for years to come.
7. Blackboard and Chalk
Giving your child the opportunity to draw on a chalkboard doesn’t just improve their hand-eye coordination; it engages their fine and gross motor skills as well. Gross motor skills are movements that use your child’s large muscles – for instance, crossing their arms over one another to reach each top corner of a large blackboard.
Purchasing a sturdy, good-quality blackboard that your child will get years of use out of is an excellent investment.