Motor skills are an essential factor of development for all children. These skills are movements of the body which are made when the brain, nervous system and muscles work in conjunction with each other. Through each stage of a child’s development, motor skills will continue to develop from small grasps of the hand to jumping and catching. Both fine (small) motor skills and gross (large) motor skills will contribute to children's development and independence.
The term gross motor development refers to physical skills that use large body movements, normally involving the entire body. Catching, throwing, running, jumping, hopping and balancing are all important gross motor skills that children need to develop in the Foundation Stage.
Fine motor skills are necessary to engage in smaller, more precise movements, normally using the hands and fingers. Fine motor skills can be developed through building with construction materials, manipulating buttons and zips, using scissors, using a knife and fork, completing jigsaws, holding writing materials and copying shapes, patterns, letters and numbers.