As kids grow, their movements become more precise. Follow your child’s fine motor skill development from age 6 to 7.
Fine motor skill development allows your child to use the little muscles in their hands and fingers to pick up and handle small objects. It also involves learning to use both hands at the same time to perform manual tasks.
Fine motor skills: 6–7 years old
At this age:
- Your child can write out most letters of the alphabet, but may form some letters backwards.
- They draw characters with more accuracy, adding detail to their drawings and respecting proportions more and more (e.g., parents are taller than children, the dog is smaller than the child, the house is bigger than all the characters, etc.).
Remember that not all children develop the same skills at the same speed. The material on this website is for general information purposes only. If you’re concerned about your child’s development, speak with a doctor.
- Your child’s finger placement when holding scissors becomes more comfortable, and they can cut out complex shapes by following an outline.
- Your child can perform more complex folds by following a pattern.
- When tying their shoes, your child can make a bow if an adult reminds them of the steps to follow.
- They can handle small objects with their fingertips without dropping anything.
Little by little, your child is beginning to do the following:
- Draw more realistic pictures. For example, you’ll recognize certain people, animals, places, and familiar objects due to the details they include.
- Write spontaneously, e.g., they may suddenly develop an interest in writing cards and little notes for people they care about.
- Use their knife and fork at the same time to cut softer foods.
- Consistently dress themself without any help, including any fasteners.
How can you help your child progress?
Your child is unique and will develop at their own pace. They have strengths and weaknesses and are becoming increasingly self-aware. You can help your child develop their fine motor skills with these simple everyday actions:
When your child works on a craft, draws a picture, or writes a card, | |they improve their hand-eye coordination and improve their ability to handle pencils, brushes, and scissors.
When you give your child shoes with laces instead of Velcro fasteners and teach them how to tie their own shoes, | |they become more precise in their movements and are proud to be wearing “big kid shoes.” Shoes with laces give children plenty of opportunities to develop their finger dexterity.
When you notice how much your child’s handwriting has improved when you compare recent
homework assignments against their previous work,
| |they get a sense of pride from knowing they are getting better at printing.
When you ask your child to help you write a shopping list, | |they develop their ability to use a pencil for daily tasks. They also learn how writing can be useful in their day-to-day life.
When you let your child cut their own food during mealtimes, | |they develop their fine motor coordination and their movements become more accurate. They also learn to use both hands to perform a task.
When you give your child a piggy bank to put money in, | |they get better at handling small objects while learning the concept of saving money.
When you play a patty-cake game with your child to the rhythm of a nursery rhyme,
they improve their ability to coordinate both of their hands. They also learn to make different gestures with their two hands while following the rhythm of the song.
Scientific review: Sonya Côté and Andreia R. Malisia, occupational therapists
Research and copywriting: The Naître et grandir team
Updated: September 2021
Photo : iStock.com/DragonImages
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- Bouchard, Caroline, and Nathalie Fréchette. Le développement global de l’enfant de 6 à 12 ans en contextes éducatifs. Presses de l’Université du Québec, 2010, 580 pp.
- Duclos, Germain, et al. Besoins et défis des enfants : vivre en harmonie avec les enfants de 6 à 12 ans.Éditions Enfants Québec, 2009, 319 pp.
- Ferland, Francine. Le développement de l’enfant au quotidien : de 6 à 12 ans. 2nd ed., Éditions du CHU Sainte-Justine, 2014, 178 pp.
- Université de Montréal. Portail enfance et familles. “Étapes du développement.” www.portailenfance.ca