3 Stages of Tearing Paper

Tearing paper is a fun and simple activity for young children. It’s also good to exercise children’s fine motor muscles. Therefore, it’s great if we occasionaly let children do the activity. 

But do you know that, if you pay attention to children’s fingers while they tear paper, they will tear the paper in different kind of ways. Here are the ways you may see:

  1. Tear  by grabbing the paper with both hands on the left and right sides of the paper.   
  2. Tear by holding the paper with fingers of both hands on the left and right sides of the paper.
  3. Tear by holding the paper with thumb and forefinger of each hands on the left and right sides of the paper.                          

    And do you know that the differences in tearing the paper actually show the strength of children’s fine motor muscles in stages. Here are how each ways show the strength:

    • The first way mentioned above means that the child’s fingers muscles are not strong enough to tear the paper. That’s why he needs to grab the paper to tear it. 
    • The second way means that the fingers’ muscles has been stronger than the first one to tear the paper. 
    • The third way means that the child’s fingers has been strong and ready to tear paper in anyway she needs to.

    Knowing the stages of tearing paper is important because it will make us able to

    • Prepare the paper which is suitable with children’s strength to be torn. For example, give the soft or thin paper when children are in the first stage. By doing so, they will be able to tear the paper easily which will make them feel fun and happy doing it. And this will make them want to do it more than once. As they often doing so, their muscles will be strengthen. Then, we can gradually give the harder and thicker paper. This eventually will make them reach the second and the third stages.
    • Recognize children’s fine motor muscles strength. The recognition will make us able to figure out the kind of activities which is suitable and proper based on children’s ability. So we won’t give the activities which may still too difficult to do by our children.

    That’s all about tearing paper activity. It’s not only fun for children but it can also show us how far our children’s fine motor muscles have developed. And this can be our basis to think of other activities which will develop our children’s ability even more.

      Five Reasons Why Finger Painting is Important for Children

      Fun Finger Paint

      Finger painting is messy. It takes time to clean up the mess. So, we sometimes try to find way to make it less messy. However, it’s actually necessary for children to do the messy finger painting. Why? Here are the reasons:

      1. Children’s sense of curiosity will be fulfilled

      Children  always want to try everything. It includes the messy finger painting. It makes them curious. When we allow them to do what they want, their senses of curiosity will be fulfilled.

      1. Making a mess is the step they’ve got to go through

      Not allowing children to make a mess will only make children skip the process they should’ve gone through in the first place. It will be like something is missing and their curiosity will stay inside them. Next time, they’ve got a chance to make a mess, they will do it. If this happens in public places, they may make a mess which may be disliked by others. This likely happens as they haven’t got the experience to control the mess they make -which they will be able to learn – if they’ve got the chance to make a mess in personal place such as home.

      1. Children will able to exercise their gross motor muscle

      When they move their arms freely -which make the activity messier- they actually exercise gross motor muscles. As they do the activity often, their arms will be stronger which will make them able to control their arms movement better. And this actually will make them do the activity less messy next time. They will be able to make the paint spreading only at the space provided for the painting without crossing it. It’s due to their ability in controlling their arms. And this ability is important for later learning such as in writing letters and numbers.

      1. Children will able to exercise their fine motor muscle

      The next step after their gross motor muscle developed is fine motor muscle. Finger painting will give them the experience  to exercise fine motor muscle as well, especially the activity which requires fingers movement more than arms. And the exercised fine motor muscles is important for later learning such as writing letters and numbers, just as the exercised gross motor muscles.

      1. It’s a way to learn responsibility

      Finger painting is messy. But by doing so, children actually can learn how to clean up the mess. If we show them how to do it, they would definitely follow what we do. So, if we let children do the activity regularly, they will learn that they have to clean up after they do the messy activity. And when they’ve learned about it, they actually have learned about the value of responsibility.

      So, let children do the messy finger painting. By doing so, they will actually learn to do the activity less messy as they’ve gone through the process they’ve got to experience. Starting from really messy to neat and tidy. And along the process, they also learn about responsibility by cleaning up the mess they’ve made.

      Happy finger painting with your children 🙂