Physical development means development of both fine and gross motor skills. When you use larger muscles – like for activities such as jumping, sliding, running – these constitute gross motor skills development.
Fine motor skills development involves using the body’s smaller muscles as is used in cutting, holding a crayon and writing. Fine motor skills also involve hand –eye co-ordination. Children reach out, grasp and let go in the process of developing fine motor skills.
Your Child’s Physical Development
Your child at this age will be more in control when he walks, climbs and runs. He will also hop and jump a few low steps, alternate his feet while climbing. He will learn to avoid obstacles, run at a pace that is even and walk without watching his step and also backwards. Balancing will also be easy for your child, allowing him to ride a bicycle with training wheels. He will also learn to swing himself, shifting his control to his legs and learn to break a fall. Your child can also roll sideways.
Physical activity at this age will excite the child, and he will be interested in chasing balls, kicking it and running to pick it or kick it further. Even though your child might love physical activity, he will need rest periods and good sleep – this is where the parent needs to intervene and allow him the rest he needs.
Your child is developing strength, dexterity, and control when it comes to using more complicated tools like a scissor or a hammer, indicating a further development in his fine motor skills.
He is better at using building blocks and puzzle, stringing beats and drawing shapes, indicating an improved hand-eye co-ordination. He no longer will hold crayons in his fist, but use fingers. Allowing your children to play with blocks, hold crayons and solve the puzzles – will help them improve their fine motor skills sooner.
Your child might be happy to undress himself, though he will need help getting dressed. Teaching them to undo their buttons and tie laces is something you might want to start at this stage. Your child might show his preference for being right or left-handed but will still use them alternately to do the several tasks.
At this age, your child will want to get independent and do his own tasks. He will learn to brush his own teeth, use the toilet, wipe his face and blow his nose when told to. You can start inculcating these cleanliness practices at this age. He might want to try new foods. He will learn how to calm himself down, rest and relax. He will learn to stay away from potentially dangerous substances and activities and might even tell others to do so.
With more control over his movements and reflexes, his urge to be independent will go on increasing. While it is fine for you to be happy and relieved to see him being independent, you also need to keep a vigilant eye for the delays in his physical development milestones. This will ensure early diagnosis and proper treatment.