Tools of the (Toddler) Trade

By: Michelle Yoder

As a child develops, he must learn to use tools, and I’m not talking about the ones from Home Depot! Pencils, scissors and spoons are necessary for your child to successfully perform self-care, play and school tasks.

 Tongs are a great pre-cursor to scissor use.  These simple household “tools,” found in nearly every home kitchen, promote the dexterity and strength of three fingers — the thumb, index and long fingers.  These three fingers are essential for manipulating scissors, as well as performing daily pre-schooler skills like buttoning, holding a pencil and unscrewing a toothpaste cap.

There’s no need to run to the store.  Just check your kitchen drawer.  You’ll likely find a variety of tongs, each requiring varying degrees of strength and manipulation, providing ample “heavy” work for little hands!

 Children love tong play.  Small tongs can be used to decorate muffins (in tins) and baked goods.  Bears or color pom-poms can be sorted into ice cube trays and egg cartons.  Even sorting small items such as beads or cereal pieces is fun with tongs!  And at that young age, shouldn’t learning always be fun?

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