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Your 1 Year Old: Motor, Cognitive, Verbal, and Social Skills

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Fine Motor Skills to Look for by Age 1
One of the great moments at a first birthday party may be watching your child pick up bits of his cake and feed himself. He's able to do this because his fine motor skills are much more developed and he has better control over those tiny finger and hand muscles. This allows him to use a pincer grasp, using his thumb and second or third finger to pinch items to pick them up.

This improved coordination will allow him to:

  • feed himself finger foods
  • begin to scribble with a crayon
  • cover and uncover jars or boxes
  • tear up paper
  • put items into container and take them out again
  • turn rotating handles (like on a jack-in-the-box toy)
  • bang items together
  • put large pegs in holes

Highlight: Your one-year-old's newfound dexterity will make him eager to investigate objects around him. Musical instruments that he can shake and bang will delight him as will toys with levers, wheels, and other moving parts. Blocks are a perennial favorite game, especially the part where he gets to knock down a tower you built together.

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