Friday, December 21, 2012

Santa Letters + Cookie Decorating = Fine Motor Fun!

FINE MOTOR FRIDAY RETURNS!!
WELCOME BACK!
Part #39 in my on-going series
photo of: Fine Motor Leads to Fine Arts: The Christmas Edition, (part 39) RainbowsWithinReach

The Christmas Season Issue!

This is part #39 in the continuing Friday series where we focus on fine motor activities. We all know how important those skills are to developing further creative skills. Creative writing, painting, graphic design -- which ever component of the Fine Arts spectrum is nearest to your heart.... they all require fine motor development. As an author/illustrator making school visits, I keep my eyes open for inspiration.  

Do you have a four year old boy who is not especially motivated to pick up crayons or pencils?

photo of: Icing a Cookie as a Fine Motor Activity at RainbowsWithinReach

Think of all the fun implicit in decorating cookies at this time of year. Icing a cookie with a Popsicle stick is just a slight variation on holding a crayon. Look at the 'three finger hold' demonstrated in the placement of the sprinkles! VOILA! Cookies I tell you! Sprinkles!! Get out the icing and engage in an age old tradition.... now under the category of fine motor development!

photo of: Pincer Grasp Development for Fine Motor Work via RainbowsWithinReach

Here's another glimpse from my memory card of these fingers in action. 
STICKERS! STICKERS I tell you!!! 
What a PERFECT challenge for little fingers to exert fine motor control. 
This exerted energy is developing the dexterity needed for a pincer grasp!
PINCER GRASP FROM STICKER PEELING!!!
Shhhhh. Don't tell the four year old boy. 
He thinks he's having fun.  

photo of: Pincer Grasp for Fine Motor Work via RainbowsWithinReach


Looking for a little something you can whip together this weekend....
to give those extra aunts and uncles? 
Have paper plates? 
Stapler? 
Markers, crayons or paint? 

Here ya go! 

photo of: Making a Christmas Tree from Paper Plates via RainbowsWithinReach

No teacher ever has enough 'poems' to go with children's hand-print paintings. 
I get google visits on a daily basis from folks looking for a poem for handprints! 
I hadn't seen this one previously. 

I'm sure it will warm many parental hearts next week at the great reveal! 

photo of: Poem for Handprint Painting via RainbowsWithinReach

I have some other hand print poem selections: click here

**I even wrote my own poem for children's art --doesn't have to be a hand print project. I've uploaded it over at Teachers Pay Teachers as an instant freebie download. Click here for FREEBIE poem download.) 
photo of: Poem for Hand Print Art via RainbowsWithinReach
Poem for Painted Hand Print Art
Now let's take a look at some letters to Santa. 
THE PERFECT motivation for Fine Motor Development -- if ever there was one! 

Make a list of what you are wishing Santa will provide. 

photo of: Dear Santa Letter for Fine Motor Work via RainbowsWithinReach

photo of: Dear Santa Letter for Fine Motor Work via RainbowsWithinReach

photo of: Dear Santa Letter for Fine Motor Work via RainbowsWithinReach

photo of: Dear Santa Letter for Fine Motor Work via RainbowsWithinReach

Now take a look at how this 'Dear Santa' template letter has transitioned for the child who is beginning to associate her letter formation with the act of writing-a-letter! BAZINGA!! "And that's what its all about."

photo of: Dear Santa Letter for Fine Motor Work via RainbowsWithinReach

Look at all of this fine motor fun on display. The traditional 'lacing' activity brought to bear just in time for the holiday season. STOCKING STUFFERS! Once the stocking is laced front to back, it becomes a canvas for fine Arts exploration. Memento!

photo of: Lacing Christmas Stockings for Fine Motor Development via RainbowsWithinReach

Here is a glorious seasonal combination of drawings combined with a creative writing experience. This is the work of mature first graders. 

"If I lived in a snow globe I would............." 

photo of: Snow Globe Writing Project via RainbowsWithinReach

***I think that its interesting to note that the teacher has allowed the students to work diligently on the drawing aspect and the creative story telling portion of this project. I would guess that the stories were transcribed by a helpful typist for the finished creations. (I rather doubt that the first graders have this level of key-boarding skills.) 

photo of: Snow Globe Writing Project via RainbowsWithinReach

photo of: Snow Globe Writing Project via RainbowsWithinReach

Not to show any favoritism, but this next little snow globe holds a special place in my heart. This is the work of my very own WonderBoy.... and yes. His snow globe would be filled with ramps! 

photo of: Snow Globe Writing Project via RainbowsWithinReach

~~ Did you see these earlier articles I have here for the holidays? I have had several RoundUPs by theme: 


  • All things Reindeer Related are found at this click
  • All things Gingerbread Related are housed at this click. 
  • I have two dozen Christmas BULLETIN BOARDS cataloged in this article
  • Tomorrow I have some awesome snow-covered buildings in a showcase.... here's that link
  • Sunday will be INCREDIBLE art responses to the Nutcracker Suite. 
  • Monday will be some VERY clever Santa ideas. 
  • All sorts of holiday ideas I brought together in my article over at PreK+K Sharing requires a click over to there.

The holidays are a time for giving thanks. This is such a sweet idea. It could be laminated to create a permanent placemat keepsake. 

photo of: "I Am Thankful" Placemat via RainbowsWithinReach


Let's conclude with a precious ornament keepsake built using a Popsicle stick foundation to create the stable. I can promise you this will be a treasure to hang on the tree for seasons to come. The sticks being all askew make it all the more heart-felt in its simplicity, assuring that little independent fingers were behind the creative effort. An heirloom in my book. 

photo of: Christmas Manger Scene with Popsicle Sticks via RainbowsWithinReach

-- Debbie -- 
Pre-K, Kindergarten, First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth - TeachersPayTeachers.com
My new little store: come check out the freebies! 
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