I am excited to partner with Wikki Stix today to bring you this GIVEAWAY and post on how to strengthen a pencil grip through play!
Please leave a comment at the bottom of this post to enter the giveaway.
We all know how important play is for children. Play builds creativity and imagination and it is actually through play that children learn. Play is also critical to later physical skills, such as hand strength and pencil grips.
I have heard of some growing concern that little ones are coming to school with a very weak to non-existent pencil grip. Experts suggest this is because of increased screen time, which is an incredible concern since it means this screen time is taking the place of play.
We need to give our little ones plenty of time to play for so, so many reasons!
To combat the pencil grip issue, and to reinforce how these skills easily emerge through play, I have compiled a list of 5 easy ways to help support the development of a proper pencil grip — all through play.
To make things even simpler, all 5 of these activities use the incredibly versatile (and one of our favourite toys) Wikki Stix! One package of Wikki Stix lasts pretty much forever, can be used again and again, and is completely mess free. These great Stix are a fabulous alternative to clay while holding all of the same benefits.
Here are my 5 playful ways to strengthen a pencil grip:
Twisting Wikki Stix:
Do the twist! Grab two strands of Wikki Stix and get your little ones twisting! This twisting motion is excellent for strengthening a tripod grasp, which is a critical skill for developing a pencil grip. Twist a few colours together, twist a big thick rope, see if you can twist a really long skinny rope.
Rolling Wikki Stix into a ball:
Get on a roll! A great way to strengthen the whole hand is by rolling Wikki Stix into a ball. Little hands can put a Stix in one palm and use the other hand to roll it into a ball. This takes some practice and might be easier with a few Stix to begin, as it will make a larger ball. Balls can also be rolled on a table top using one palm.
Creating pictures on a table top:
My kids love making table top pictures using Wikki Stix. They will create beautiful and elaborate scenes. By holding one end of the Wikki Stix still while moving the other end to create shapes and pictures, ‘bilateral coordination’ increases which is the skill needed to hold the piece of paper while writing.
Thread beads onto Wikki Stix:
Wikki Stix jewellery is all the rage. We love using Wikki Stix to thread beads, as they are quite sturdy Stix, making it easier for little hands to thread the beads. This improves the pincer grasp, which is using the thumb and first finger. A proper pincer grasp is another skill needed for a proper pencil grip.
Creating 3D Objects:
Manipulating and moulding Wikki Stix is a great way to strengthen the whole hand and get those hands nice and strong for holding a pencil. A great way to encourage lots of moulding is by creating 3D images. Tiny animals, people and things can easily be made 3 dimensional with Wikki Stix.
There you have them! Five fun ways to get those little hands primed and ready for all that lay ahead. And wonderful and meaningful play and learning for right now as well.
Here is to bringing back play (and pencil grips too!)
I want to thank Wikki Stix for partnering with me on this project. If you are interested in getting some Wikki Stix for your little ones you can find them in so many places!
GIVEAWAY!!!!!! Giveaway is now closed.
Wikki Stix is generously offering a giveaway to one lucky winner. To be entered to win a TRIPLE PAK of Wikki Stix please simply leave a comment below. This giveaway is open to US Readers only.
This Giveaway is now closed. Thank you for entering and congratulations to Connie!!
Thank you so much for reading friends. I hope you are having a wonderful week.