Hesperian Health Guides
Hand and finger skills
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All children develop hand and finger skills, but these skills are harder to learn for children who cannot see. A child who cannot see well must learn to control his fingers, hands and arms because he depends so much on them to give him information about the world. These skills are also important when he learns to read Braille.
Children who cannot see well may not be as active as other children. Encourage your child to participate in the everyday activities that will help him develop:
- strength and flexibility in his hands and fingers
- the ability to feel small and fine details and shapes with his fingers
|as a young child||older and
learn a trade
To help your child develop strength and flexibility in his hands and fingers
Give your child tasks or make up games in which he uses his finger muscles — for example, rolling balls of mud or clay, kneading bread dough, shelling peas, or squeezing oranges.
Give your child tasks or make up games in which he breaks or tears things — like grass, leaves, corn husks, or shells — into little pieces.
Encourage your child to do things that require turning his hand, like wringing the water out of wet clothes, opening jars with screw-on lids, or turning the radio off and on.
Encourage your child to scribble and draw. Drawing in wet sand or mud lets him feel the shapes that he has drawn.
To help your child develop the ability to feel fine details and shapes with his fingers
Let your child crawl on different surfaces, like wood floors, rugs, wet and dry grass, mud, and sand.
Encourage your child to find his own clothing by the feel of the material.
Ask your child to help with
chores in which he must feel the
differences between small things.
Glue string or yarn in different patterns on a piece of paper or cloth. Then let your child trace the lines with his fingertips.