Fun Activities Help Children with Special Needs Improve Motor Function

Six percent of children have been diagnosed with motor skills-related disorders, according to an article published by Mental Help. Various diseases and health conditions affect the motor function of children as they grow. However, many activities can help them to develop and improve their motor function, allowing them to acquire the skills they need to be in control of their lives and setting them up for self-dependency later on.

Fun Activities Help Children with Special Needs Improve Motor Function

Conditions that Affect Kids’ Motor Skills

Conditions that affect motor function in children generally interfere with the movement of muscles and body parts. Here are just a few of those conditions.

Development Coordination Disorder (DCD) is a lifelong condition that affects motor function in children. Doing activities that help exercise their muscles can help children to manage DCD.

Cerebral palsy is another condition that interferes with motor function and posture in children. It also causes abnormal reflexes, involuntary movement, and muscle rigidity. Children diagnosed with cerebral palsy may have sight issues that make focusing on an object difficult due to muscle rigidity. However, encouraging them to participate in fun activities for kids that focus on fine motor control helps to improve their motor skills and gain greater control.

Multiple sclerosis in children causes weaknesses, and can lead to difficulties when walking. It also causes tremors and slurred speech. When these symptoms are detected in children, encouraging them to engage in activities to improve motor function can help them to gain more control.

Essential tremor is a nerve disorder that results in uncontrollable tremors. It generally affects the voice, arms and head.

All these conditions affect the proper functioning of the muscles in children, but are manageable with appropriate activities for muscle exercise.

Fun Activities to Improve Motor Function

Whether a child has been diagnosed with a condition that impairs motor function or not, motor skills are important to everyone. Motor control is essential for writing, grasping and holding. For these reasons, you’ll want to engage children in activities that improve their motor skills, no matter what their abilities. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Hiding and seeking objects helps a child to exercise their fingers when searching for the objects. You could hide objects in plasticine and encourage the child to seek the object. If no plasticine is available, the transfer game where objects are transferred from one bowl to another works just fine.
  • Scissors skills and connect the dots are other activities that can help improve motor skills. When using scissors to cut the paper strips, muscles get exercised. Grasping skills, meanwhile, will improve when playing connect the dots game using their pencils.
  • Outdoor activities are beneficial too. Fishing, for example, or simply visiting the park, can help kids develop their motor skills. The simple act of moving is important for easing mobility issues, especially for kids diagnosed with cerebral palsy. However, children with motor function difficulties should always be supervised while playing outdoors to avoid injuries.

Motor function is a lifelong skill that children will need in order to live an independent and self-sufficient life. With almost every activity in life requiring the movement of muscles, equipping children with motor skills is inevitable. The good news is, most play and craft activities will help develop these skills.

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