Students use their fingers to accomplish tasks such as creating and constructing things. This type of activity is called fine motor function, because it involves the smaller muscles. Fine motor control of the fingers allows us to fix things (such as model airplanes) and to create works of art (such as when molding clay, drawing pictures and figures, or cutting out shapes).

In addition, fine motor control enables us to do actions such as holding and using utensils and typing on a computer. Students need to plan and coordinate their fine muscle movements just as they do their gross muscle activities. Such coordination involves remembering which muscles to use, thinking about and planning how to use these muscles, and monitoring and adapting finger movements in response to the needs of an activity.

Necessary SubSkills Common Obstacles Helpful Tips
Student holds and uses utensils easily and efficiently (scissors, knife, and fork). Student has difficulty holding and using utensils. view
Student draws shapes and/or figures well. Student has trouble drawing shapes and/or figures. view
Student can plan and coordinate finger movements smoothly when playing an instrument, tying shoes, etc. Student cannot plan and coordinate finger movements when playing an instrument, tying shoes, or doing other activities requiring small muscle control. view
Student can easily type on a computer keyboard. Student has difficulty typing on a computer keyboard. view