In a recent blog post, I shared how technology and increased demands on our time has made it more difficult for our young learners to get the fine motor practice they need. My favorite way to sneak in a little extra fine motor practice is with fine motor morning tubs. They have been the perfect soft start to our day! Just what my students need to warm up their brains, as we get ready to tackle the busy school day. Here are just a few of my favorite February fine motor activities for literacy and math!
You can also weave a little fine motor practice into your center rotations, early finisher activities and small group instruction!
February Fine Motor Activities for Literacy
Work those pincer muscles by having the students clip the correct toothbrush handle (letter) onto the toothbrush bristles. Match upper to upper, or upper to lower.
Unscramble the sight word, and write it inside the mouth. Brush away the word using a toothbrush!
Using chain links, students match each groundhog to his shadow by finding the rhyming word pairs. Rhyming builds on phonemic awareness skills, which is such an important early literacy skill, and the chain links build on that muscle control in the fingers!
Pinching clothespins is a great way to exercise pincer muscles needed for controlling pencils, crayons and scissors. Plus, you can use them to build sight words!
For this activity, the students will listen to the beginning sound and link the Valentine with the appropriate envelope.
Students read the color word on each heart card. Then, sort manipulatives into colored groups. If you have colored beads or heart beads, you can up the fine motor rigor in this activity by asking them to string the beads in each group!
Read each color word, and use tweezers to put the “candy” in the candy box.
Around President’s Day, I love having president-themed activities out for my students to help reinforce what we’re learning about in social studies! These word cards are missing the vowel in each CVC word. Write vowels on a set of clothespins, and students can place the correct clothespin in each empty space on the card!
Did you know that Abe Lincoln kept important letters and papers under his hat? Build fine motor skills by linking the hats in alphabetical order.
Using colored popsicle sticks, students fill in the picture on each mat. Then, they read and trace each sentence that matches the picture.
February Fine Motor Activities for Math
February is also dental hygiene awareness month, so teeth-themed activities are fun to include in your center work during this time of year. I love giving students a subtraction sentence, and allowing them to use tweezers to remove the “teeth” (cotton balls or white pom poms) from the picture! So much fun!
For an added challenge, use a +/- die! I found these at my local teaching store.
Snap cubes provide powerful fine motor practice! The muscle control that it takes to connect and pull apart the cubes is great for little hands. In this activity, students will use the snap cubes (or dirt blocks) to build a burrow for the groundhog! Bonus points if they use their visual-spatial reasoning skills to make the burrow look like the picture!
At this center, the students will use tweezers and pom poms to feed the groundhog the correct number of each color flower. Once they have modeled the subtraction problem, they will complete the number sentence.
Students use popsicle sticks and string to build the same shape as the groundhog’s face in the picture.
This fine motor activity helps the students practice nonstandard measurement. First, they will order the log cabins from the shortest to the tallest. Then, they will measure them using popsicle sticks.
Here’s another activity that works on measurement, but this time with linking cubes.
Play dough is another great tool for strengthening finger and hand muscles. For this activity, the students will use play dough to make each number.
Pattern blocks are not only great fine motor work, but they also build on critical thinking skills! Using the key on the mat, students roll dice and choose the matching shapes to add to the picture. They continue rolling and building until the picture is complete!
More Fine Motor Activities
Don’t forget to include a few February fine motor activities at your classroom Valentine’s Day party!
Plus, your students will enjoy these fine motor activities for the 100th Day of School!
If you’re looking for ideas for other times of the year, click HERE!
DON’T FORGET IT… PIN IT!