While sending your little one to daycare may be a daunting experience for any parent, daycare for infants show a great benefit to the developing mind and body of a little child, as well as for the parents and the family. In the United States, most families require two incomes to get by financially. This often means that parents are unable to stay home and look after their child until the evening time. This is where daycare for infants can be beneficial to the growing emotional, social and academic well-being of your little one. One of the main benefits of daycare for infants is the development of their motor skills, both gross and fine.
Fine motor skills develop alongside gross motor skills, and there are infant developmental milestones that your child needs to reach. However, it is important to realize and understand that children grow and develop at their own rate because they are unique and having age-appropriate milestones just helps to point out if there really is a developmental delay. Sending your child to daycare can help them reach their fine motor skills within an acceptable time, by helping to stimulate them in a fun and creative way.
What Are Fine Motor Skills in Child Development?
Fine motor skills are the skills and coordinated movement that involves the small muscles of the hands, fingers and the upper arms. Controlling the muscles of the face, tongue and lips in order to form facial expressions and words is also included in fine motor skills. The development of fine motor skills occurs alongside cognitive and emotional development. It starts from the second your child is introduced into the world, and the most exponential development in their fine motor skills happens during the infancy period (age 0-2 years). The benefit of having your infant in daycare is the focused, directed activities that are designed for your child which is both age-appropriate, supportive and stimulating to their muscular development. At Providence Children’s Academy, we are focused on activates that help to stimulate and develop the fine motor skills.
An emphasis on fine motor skills is healthy and important, since fine motor skills are typically what is required in more self-care actions, such as doing up buttons, holding a fork or playing with puzzles. When children struggle with these activities, especially when they see others do it, they feel frustrated and it can be detrimental to their self-esteem. Our goal is to encourage, nurture and support your child as they learn and become more comfortable with their bodies.
Fun Activities That Encourage Child Development
Different activities that can be incorporated into daycares should be both educational, teach kids important things on the curriculum like colors, shapes and numbers, but should also be fun and interesting in order to hold the attention of the child long enough to be beneficial. Some examples of these include:
- Play dough or clay, as this stimulates both strength in the hands, as well as giving children the freedom to express their own creativity by making what they would like. Additionally, one can add tools like cookie cutters, in order for children to make shapes and learn about shapes.
- Play involving blocks of various sizes is one of the most important tools to help toddlers and infants. It helps to develop fine motor skills when they hold and place blocks, but also teach important concepts like size and shape comparison.
- Stringing items like macaroni, fruit loops or cereal onto yarn, pipe cleaners or shoelaces helps children to understand progression play, and how to systematically perform a task multiple times.
- Shared reading time is both educational and helps to develop fine motor skills. The child is encouraged to hold the book and turn the pages, which is a coordinated movement which required accurate control of the muscles of the hands, all while helping them learn new words and pictures. Using big books with sturdy pages are best.
- Arts and crafts activities like cutting out shapes with scissors, coloring, painting and using markers on pictures helps to stimulate and develop their ability to hold and handle pens, pencils and other objects of varying sizes in their hands.
If you are interested in enrolling your child in a daycare program that helps to stimulated them educationally, build social and emotional skills and develop gross and fine motor skills, contact Providence Children’s Academy today!