11 Activities That Help Improve Handwriting

A preschool-age boy holds a pencil to write the alphabet in a spiral notebook
Sarah Carter

Learning to write can be challenging for children, especially in a world of predominately digital communication. To write, children need strong visual and gross motor skills before they can achieve the necessary fine motor skills. Here are several fun activities you can do with your kids. These exercises strengthen muscles and sharpen the skills that can improve a child's handwriting, and they're also a fun way to spend time together as a family.

Fine motor skills

  • Play cotton ball hockey on a table.
  • Pick up pennies, one at a time, holding them in the same hand.
  • Crumple a piece of paper with one hand only. Then flatten it back out with that same hand.
  • Use tweezers to pick up or remove items from an ice cube tray.

Gross motor skills

  • Race while crawling, crab-walking or rolling.
  • See how long you can hold something at shoulder level or higher.
  • Create an obstacle course, and then race through it.

Visual skills

  • License plate game: When riding in the car, find letters of the alphabet in order on license plates of passing cars.
  • View a tray of random items, cover it and try to remember what was there.
  • Trace a letter on a child's back. Have the child guess what letter it is. Then draw it on paper for her to see.

If you want to reinforce handwriting techniques, play tic-tac-toe with your child. This simple game uses basic handwriting strokes.

This article first appeared in the August/September 2017 issue of Focus on the Family magazine. If you enjoyed this article, read more like it in Focus on the Family's marriage and parenting magazine. Get this publication delivered to your home by subscribing to it for a gift of any amount.
© 2017 by Sarah Adkisson. Used by permission.

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