Writing Readiness

Are you aware that our EYFS age children and a 7 year old have a significantly different skeletal structure in their hands?Take a look at the two photos, do you notice the differences?

These differing skeletal structures make a massive difference to a child’s ability to practice many fine motor skills such as writing, using scissors and picking up small objects.

The bones in the wrist of the EYFS age child photo (3 years old) are still made up of mainly cartilage, there are many spaces in between the bones where muscles and tendons will change, develop and strengthen throughout the years.

Some children will develop a love of writing and drawing where as others don’t show much interest at all – don’t let writing become a battle or worry if your child doesn’t show an interest in writing or drawing it will come eventually, for now concentrate on fine motor skills to develop hand and finger strength – research also suggests that boys can often appear less interested in writing and drawing than girls.

Pre-writing skills are essential for a child to be able to develop the ability to hold and move a pencil effectively and therefore produce legible writing. These skills not only contribute to the child’s ability to hold and use a pencil but also the ability to draw, write, copy, and colour.

Preschool children have so many developmental building blocks to go through first before writing readiness

Hand and finger strength

Pencil grasp

hand eye coordination

Object manipulation

Upper body strength

Visual perception

Hand dominance

The above are just to name a few!!

While they are growing, strengthen those little bones and muscles with pre writing, muscle strengthening activities:

Painting – use different size brushes and paints

Drawing – try making marks in shaving foam and sand as well as the usual pencils

Colouring with pencils, pens, crayons, chalks and charcoal


Tearing and cutting


Digging in soil

Building with lego or other blocks

Threading with beads and pasta


Squeezing – sponges/using pippettes/relaxation balls

Picking up and throwing balls – try different size and shape balls

These all strengthen and help develop little hands, muscles, and bones. When they are physically ready to write, it will be so much easier than if they were pushed when they didn’t want to and weren’t ready.

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