As the holiday season approaches, parents and teachers are trying to find a fun way to engage young children in Christmas activities while also nurturing fine motor skills. What if there was a great way to combine the fun of Christmas time with a fantastic fine motor activity that’s also super easy? Look no further – we’ve got just the thing to make your holiday season even more special!
The holiday time can be a lot of added stress, so we like to keep it simple with our kid’s activities. So, here’s a great activity that not only embraces the spirit of Christmas but also aids in the development of fine motor skills in young children with minimal set up and supplies.
Little hands eagerly creating their very own fine motor Christmas trees and gingerbread men using a classic holiday element – cookie cutters! We’re just swapping the baking sheets for play dough to sculpt adorable Christmas-themed creations.
Benefits of Play Dough
Join us as we delve into the world of holiday-inspired fine motor activities, focusing on the crucial elements of fine motor control, pincer grasp, and hand strength. These activities are not only much fun for the kids but also provide a festive platform for their artistic expression. There are so many possibilities with play dough!
We love using play dough presents because there’s so many benefits for young children. Play dough serves as a fantastic tool for enhancing hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills. This versatile material provides a great opportunity for little hands to explore their creativity in different ways, molding, shaping, and manipulating the dough with their hand and finger muscles.
One of the best parts of play dough is that you can make it into any themed activity you want! Engaging in themed activities with play dough not only sparks excitement but also encourages the development of fine motor work. As children roll, flatten, and sculpt the dough into Christmas-themed shapes and characters, they refine their motor skills, honing precision and control.
Fine Motor Christmas Fun
The main item you’ll need for this holiday fine motor activity is obviously play dough! You can get red and green play dough to be festive, but even that’s not necessary. You can use any color or whatever you have on hand.
Then, grab some cookie cutters for fun Christmas shapes! There’s tons of fun ideas for different cookie cutters out there, but we just used a Christmas tree, gingerbread man, and star that we already had.
The last item we recommend is a rolling pin. Bonus if it’s child sized, but they can easily learn to use a full sized one as well. A lot of play dough kits come with some type of rolling tool.
For even more tips and tools we love, check out our complete guide to play dough for young children here.
Mix It Up
Then you can incorporate different small items that go along with your theme, such as jingle bells and candy canes, offering an extra layer of sensory stimulation. During the Christmas season,
Play dough can even be a great way to practice scissor skills! Get the dull scissors that come with play dough sets to practice like in our complete scissor guide here.
For even more sensory play, try letting them add Christmas sprinkles to the Play Dough! They will have a great time adding the sprinkles themselves, and the change in texture is awesome for sensory exploration.
Get ready for some creative, hands-on, and great ideas that will have your young ones beaming with joy as they craft their own trees and gingerbread men, all while honing those fine motor skills.
Making Play Dough Cookies
First, roll put the play dough with the rolling pin or just using your hands. Depending on the age of your children, you may have to help out with the ‘cookie dough’. After the play dough is rolled out, grab the cookie cutters and start making your cookies!
A second step for fantastic fun is ‘decorating’ your cookies after they’re cut out. You can use real sprinkles or use pom poms that can later be removed.
For another sensory aspect, you can add spices to the play dough for a delicious smell! Our favorite addition is cinnamon.
Fine Motor Activities
Incorporating play dough into Christmas fine motor activities is a great idea for an easy, but fun holiday experience. The themed fine motor activities not only infuse the festive spirit into playtime but also contribute significantly to fine motor development in young children.
As they engage in creative ways of molding and shaping Christmas-themed designs, children not only enhance their motor skills but also nurture problem-solving abilities. The versatility of play dough goes beyond mere play; it lays the foundation for essential life skills, providing a delightful and memorable way for young minds to learn and grow during this great Christmas season.
So, let the laughter and learning begin with this delightful holiday play dough activity, making this Christmas truly special for your little learners.