Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Exploring Fine Motor Control and Vision

Well another couple of weeks have whipped by and so here we are again covering two HUGE topics in just this teeny tiny blog - I will try to do them justice anyways! Also a big thank you to our latest Head Start instructor Jo who dived right in the deep end and covered all the classes last week!

The first skill to review is that of Fine Motor Control. This is the ability to use smaller muscle groups to perform tasks that are precise in nature. Our children develop their gross motor skills primarily by exercising their larger muscle groups to move around. These gross motor skills help to develop core strength and this in turn provides a stable base from which to initiate movement from the smaller muscle groups responsible for fine motor control. Gross motor movement is a key concept at Head Start and is being developed every week through the running, jumping and climbing opportunities presented to our littlies. So this week we built on all this strengthening and presented our Head Starters with some fun fine motor skills to practice!

Little fingers love to explore zips, buttons, clasps and velcro so we gave them plenty of chance to do so on our new dressing up and down blanket. Puzzle pieces were hidden in pockets and there were fun pictures to discover, this is an easy one to keep practicing at home too! Other fun gadgets included tongs for picking up teeny tiny animals and nuts and bolts to keep little fingers busy.

Our next topic was Vision, this is of course one of our most primary senses and goes through many stages of development. For our kids we provided many opportunities to work on eye tracking, the younger bunch enjoyed dropping balls into new ball track and watching them closely (often moving their whole body, not just their eyes!) and the bigger kids took this a step further by trying to whack the balls as they emerged from the bottom of the track...which was harder than it looked!! There was also a marble maze for the kids that were big enough to not want to put the marbles in their mouths ;-). We had some swinging bean bags to catch and throw and try to hit with a bat and to make this a bit harder we popped some of the kids up on swiss balls. We also had some number and letter games so the older Head Starters could use their eagle eyes to spot them when called out. This is a great week to play some games of eye-spy with your littlies - remember that even our little bubs can get into this, just substitute colours or sounds for the letters (e.g., eye spy with my little eye something that sounds like moo).

This week's new topic is the first of our new Gross Motor skills - the week will be filled with Running and Jumping...look out!!

Now is the time for you all to get out your diaries and put a big red circle around this coming Sunday (11 Dec) as we are hosting our first Party in the Park. This is a great chance to come and celebrate the end of a wonderful first year of Head Start with all our new friends. Bring a picnic and a bike and we will bring some songs and Head Start fun! There will be lots of info available about plans for next year and special deals for anyone who wants to sign up early. This will be held at Marlow Park (the Dinosaur Park at St Kilda) between 11am and 1pm - keep an eye out for our banner. If the weather is uncooperative check out our Facebook page in the morning for any news of cancellation. (surely not!).

Righto - off to bed before the start of another busy week...where does the time go?! Before you know it Santa will be here!
x Lizz & the Head Start Team

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