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List of 50 Fine and Gross Motor Skills Examples

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There are so many fine and gross motor skills examples we can explore to understand the importance of these skills. From self-care to classroom activities and even in play, we can see our children using fine motor and gross motor skills in a variety of ways. 

Fine and gross motor skills are an important part of early childhood development. Helping your students to develop strong fine motor and gross motor skills will ensure they can perform a variety of everyday tasks well and set them up for academic success.

Keep reading to discover the benefits of fine motor and gross motor skills practice. Plus, get examples of fine motor skills, gross motor skills, and activities you can use in the classroom and at home to help your students strengthen their motor skills.

fine and gross motor skills examples

Benefits of Fine Motor Skills Practice

Fine motor skills are small movements using the small muscle groups in our fingers and wrists to perform tasks. Children use fine motor skills to tie their shoes, write their names, and cut with scissors.

When kids develop strong fine motor skills they’re also building hand-eye coordination.

You can help your child develop their fine motor skills with a variety of fun activities! Focusing on fine motor development will help young children to become better at handwriting and a variety of other tasks.

There are many important daily tasks that require the use of fine motor skills too. For example, feeding ourselves as well as manipulating zippers and buttons. Learning t

o use the small muscle groups in our hands and fingers is the first step toward writing, tying shoes, and even playing a musical instrument!

30+ Fine Motor Skills Examples

Why are fine motor skills so important? Check out this list of fine motor skills examples to discover all the fine motor tasks your children will need to master and get ideas for activities you can use to build these crucial skills too.

Self Care

  1. Dialing the telephone
  2. Turning doorknobs
  3. Opening locks with keys
  4. Putting a plug into a socket
  5. Buttoning and unbuttoning clothing
  6. Opening and closing zippers
  7. Fastening or unfastening snaps and buckles
  8. Tying shoestrings
  9. Teeth brushing and flossing
  10. Taking a bath or shower
  11. Using the toilet

In the Kitchen

  1. Picking up small foods like nuts or raisins
  2. Using a fork or spoon to eat
  3. Opening and closing containers
  4. Screwing and unscrewing jar lids
  5. Serving food with a ladle, tongs, or a large spoon
  6. Using a knife to cut food
  7. Spreading butter, peanut butter, or jam
  8. Helping to set the table
  9. Pouring drinks or condiments like ketchup
  10. Peeling fruits and vegetables
  11. Stirring, mixing, and whisking

Classroom Activities

  1. Turning the pages of a book
  2. Coloring activities
  3. Drawing and painting
  4. Tracing lines, shapes, and letters
  5. Writing and pre-writing
  6. Cutting with scissors
  7. Pasting or gluing
  8. Using a ruler to measure
  9. Typing and using a computer mouse
  10. Playing a musical instrument

My Favorite Fine Motor Skills Activities

There are lots of opportunities to build fine motor skills through play.

In fact, research has shown that children learn best through play. We can use structured play activities in the classroom to encourage fine motor skills development.

best toys for fine motor skills

Check out some of The Very Best Toys for Fine Motor Skills development to get some ideas for your classroom including Mr. Potato Head, wooden threading toys, and building toys to help your students further develop fine motor control while having fun. 

Then, discover Fine Motor Skills Activities for Toddlers and Beyond including many printable no-prep fine motor skills activities you can grab from my shop and use in the classroom or at home with your own little learners. Here are a few of my favorites:

Halloween Fine Motor Mats

Valentine’s Day Fine Motor Activity

Dinosaur Play Dough Mats

Benefits of Gross Motor Skills Practice

Gross motor skills involve a child’s ability to control whole body movements using their arms, legs, and torso. Acquiring these skills is an integral part of your child’s development. We use gross motor skills to perform all kinds of daily tasks involving large muscles and larger movements than fine motor skills. 

There are so many benefits to encouraging gross motor development. Gross motor skills development promotes long-lasting health through healthy physical activities like running and jumping. 

These activities can also be used to provide an energy release for wiggly children. Adding gross motor activities to your lesson plans before activities that will require added focus is a wonderful classroom management strategy!

Gross motor skills practice also helps children to relieve tension or stress when they’re feeling frustrated. These kinds of healthy physical activities can help to boost your child’s confidence and self-esteem as they attempt and complete challenging gross motor skills too.

Examples of Gross Motor Skills

There are so many examples of gross motor skills you’re probably already incorporating into your classroom activities without even knowing. Check out some of these gross motor skills examples to see how many your students can already check off the list and which might need extra practice this year.

  1. Scooping
  2. Pushing
  3. Pulling
  4. Crawling
  5. Running
  6. Jumping
  7. Standing on one foot
  8. Hopping on one foot
  9. Twisting
  10. Spinning
  11. Skipping
  12. Climbing up and down stairs
  13. Kicking a ball
  14. Throwing a ball
  15. Catching a ball
  16. Walking on tip toes
  17. Riding a tricycle
  18. Riding a scooter

My Favorite Gross Motor Skills Activities

We can get our students up and moving body parts to practice gross motor skills with all kinds of fun gross motor skills activities! The development of gross motor skills can be so much fun to practice in the classroom and at home.

Discover some of my favorite gross motor skills activities involving bigger movements using large muscle groups below.


Practice gross motor skills by painting using broad strokes to help your children build hand-eye coordination. Get outside and try a Jackson Pollock-inspired painting by pouring or squirting paint onto a large canvas to create beautiful abstract art. 

Gross motor activities for the playground

Playing on the playground or at a local park is another great opportunity to build gross motor skills. Running, skipping, hopping, and jumping are all tasks your kids can do to further develop their motor skills.

Have fun on the slide, the swings, or on climbing gyms to develop those large muscles and encourage physical activity. Checkout these indoor climbing toys for toddlers for some great climbing gyms and diy ideas!

Sports or activities with balls that involve kicking, throwing, rolling, or batting a ball are all great ways to develop gross motor skills in the classroom and at home. Beach balls are inexpensive and easy to use for many outdoor and indoor games.

Play Keep It Up with a balloon or many balloons in the classroom and at home. It’s a fun rainy day activity that will encourage all kinds of problem-solving and motor skills development for your children. Plus, the novelty of the game will keep everyone smiling while you play.

Gross motor dance parties

Dance parties are a great way to relieve tension and get a quick reset if your day isn’t going how you hoped. Plus, they’re the perfect way to encourage healthy physical activities and gross motor development when you’re stuck indoors. A quick game of freeze dance is always a favorite in my classroom. 

More fun gross motor skills activities

Chasing and popping bubbles is a fun activity that’s filled with fine and gross motor skills examples. You can use a bubble machine or have kids get in on the fun by letting them practice blowing bubbles too.

music and movement activities for preschoolers

Discover my list of Fun Music and Movement Activities for more ideas on how you can incorporate gross motor skills practice in your classroom this school year.

Then, grab a few of my printable write-the-room activities to incorporate fine and gross motor skills practice in your preschool or kindergarten classroom with some easy low-prep printables!

Summing Up Fine and Gross Motor Skill Activities

Remember, the development of these skills will happen at your child’s own pace. With lots of opportunities for daily practice that are fun and engaging, kids can build fine and gross motor skills they’ll depend on throughout the years. 

Don’t forget to share some of your favorite fine and gross motor skills examples in the comments too. I can’t wait to read them!

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