We adore this fine motor bear rescue!
What do you do when your children love lava as much as they love snacks? You make the fine motor bear rescue, of course!
Hot lava seems to be everywhere. I find that it sneaks into the living room and makes its way into the parking lot’s cracks. Lava and preschoolers seem to be this connection that unites them all. Welp. Apparently, it’s a thing, and I am determined to run with it to strengthen small hand muscles.
Easy fine motor activities can be simple to set up and tons of fun, just like this activity!
RELATED: Fine motor activities help pencil grip! Learn why!
Fine motor activities need tongs and tweezers.
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Now typically, we use these tongs.
However, funny stories about the ones shown in the picture.
It started with a quick trip to Bed Bath and Beyond with three children under five. You know this is a lot like going to a toy store for parents. As my husband eyed up the waffle makers, the boys were memorized by these kitchen tongs. Makes sense. They can also be used as giant monsters that grab one another.
The trouble was that my 20-months-old found it more exciting to use it as a teether. So here we were, ready to check out with a very drooled upon kitchen tong. Naturally, we had to purchase it, and naturally, it needed to be integrated into our fine motor play.
Sounds like a win for all.
RELATED: Looking for even more fine motor play? Here are 40+ terrific fine motor activities.
So here we are.
New kitchen tongs mean more fine motor play.
And more lava talk means the counting bears need to jump in and be saved.
The setup was so super simple.
Also, never underestimate the power of a google search. You can find plenty of volcanos when you search “volcano drawings for kids.” Use these images as a guide!
- Counting bears – You know how much we use and adore these!
- White paper roll
- Kitchen tongs
- Toy tongs – alternative
Let’s get this fine motor bear rescue set up!
First, layout your white paper roll. I like to use painter’s tape to hold it down. Use online images as a guide, and draw a volcano plus hot lava.
Next, add your counting bears to your hot lava.
Finally, offer your child the kitchen tongs and ask them to “Save the Bears!”
Remind your child that they cannot use their hands. – Because lava is super hot, of course. – such a simple and convincing buy-in. – Trust me! However, if they do use thier hands, remember that the pincer grasp is also a way to strengthen fingers.
Once my preschooler had collected all of the counting bears from the hot lava, we took a look at the glass.
Conversation starters to extend
How many bears do you think you saved?
Do you think you saved more green or yellow? Let’s see!
What would happen if you had more bears to save? Do you think they would fit into this glass? Let’s add a couple more to see.
Remember, keep your preschooler’s temperament in mind. You may notice that this begins as a Breakfast Invitation, and then the extension happens after their nap.
Regardless of how it begins or ends, remember that you planted a seed. You offered an invitation to play that will over into their independent thinking and playtime later.