Fine Motor

Small Motor Skills Age Norms

Uses fingers to:

  • 2.6 unwrap food: candy wrappers, banana
  • 2.6 point with index finger
  • 2.9 stack plastic rings in correct order by size
  • 3.0 turn pages of picture storybook, one by one
  • 3.0 screw and unscrew a 3" lid, wind up toys, turn knobs

Copies large, simple shapes:

  • 2.6 vertical line
  • 3.0 horizontal line
  • 3.9 cross (+); circle
  • 4.6 square with distinct corners
  • 5.0 X
  • 5.0 rectangle, triangle
  • 5.3 diamond

Colors:

  • 2.6 uses large crayons to scribble
  • 2.9 holds crayon with thumb and fingers (not fist)
  • 4.6 within lines

Stacks blocks into tower:

  • 3.9 6-8 blocks
  • 3.0 9-10 blocks
  • 4.0 11 blocks or more

Builds structures given a model:

  • 2.9 3 block train, 3 block bridge
  • 3.0 pen for animals
  • 4.6 5 block bridge
  • 6.0 6 block pyramid, house, and complex structures

Cuts paper with scissors:

  • 3.0 makes small cuts in paper
  • 3.6 cuts across small paper, cutting in two pieces
  • 4.0 follows thick straight line
  • 4.6 follows thick curved line
  • 6.0 picture (people, animals) from magazines

Puts puzzles together without help:

  • 3.0 3-4 pieces
  • 3.9 5-7 pieces
  • 4.6 8-11 pieces

Manipulates play dough:

  • 3.0 into ball or flat, round pancakes
  • 4.0 rolls into rope

Strings:

  • 3.0 large 1-inch beads or 1-inch dry pasta using shoelace

Traces over letters:

  • 3.0 with crayons
  • 4.6 with pencil: simple capital letters H, T, L, V

Folds paper after watching model:

  • 3.6 in half, horizontally
  • 4.0 in half, diagonally

Touches:

  • 3.6 each finger of one hand to thumb of same hand

Draws:

  • 4.0 and names own pictures (not recognizable)
  • 4.6 and names own pictures (recognizable)
  • 4.9 connects two objects with line on same page

Pastes:

  • 4.6 2 pieces of paper together

Prints:

  • 4.6 copies first name given a model
  • 5.9 first and last name or 2 words, but not very clearly
  • 6.0 all 26 letters of the alphabet with or without model

Ties:

  • 5.6 small knots in shoelaces

Meet the Founders

Lynn Carahaly, M.A., CCC-SLP and Vince Carahaly, B.S., are the professionals at The Alcott Center, headquartered in Richland, Michigan. Specific information regarding The Alcott Center and programming considerations are located throughout this website. Please send all inquiries to the address/email provided. Learn More

The Alcott Center Professionals