Motor Skills Linked to Children’s Academic Performance

2 young children swimming to improve gross motor skills

During their early days, infants get to experience many changes. These changes are due to transitions from infancy to childhood. A key feature of that phase of life, childhood, is starting school. To make this transition a success, infants need several skills that involve their motor skills (fine and gross motor skills).

This article you are reading will focus on the link between a child’s motor skills development and their academic performances. It will also consider some verifiable evidence that shows how their motor skills are also responsible for how they respond to extracurricular activities.

What is a Motor Skill?

Pathways, a medically oriented online material site defines motor skills as the ability to affect certain movements in an infant, usually through a gradual learning process.

Motor skills can be divided into two types:

  • Fine motor skills
  • Gross motor skills

Fine motor skills are the way small muscles of the hands and wrists are coordinated to produce certain movements with the use of the hands, fingers, and eyes. They are also known to contribute to intelligence and another form of cognitive development in the early stage of life. Read more here.

Gross motor skills, on the other hand, involves the way the big muscles of the body are coordinated to help children develop other movements of their body parts as they make their transition from childhood to adulthood.

How do Motor Skills Affect a Child’s Academics?

According to a recent study, the rate of growth of a child’s intelligence quotient is directly proportional to their performance in school. In other words, the higher the level of a child’s motor skills, the higher the level of their performance in preschool.

Since motor skills are responsible for some common movements involving the muscles of the body, the faster they can develop this, the faster they start little movements like crawling, wriggling the fingers, blinking/opening and closing of the eyes, swimming, and so on. These are some of the skills needed to succeed in child enhancement programs as well as in preschool. Read more here.

The faster they develop these skills, the faster they will learn how to pronounce simple words, interact with their colleagues and teachers; respond to various actions, and so on.

Since most preschools utilize a lot of diagrams in their curriculum, a child’s motor skill development will be put to the test in class when they are asked to draw several diagrams. As expected, children with good motor skills will excel while those with poorly developed motor skills are expected to lag in class.

According to research done by The Educators Room, at some point, children are taught how to write the alphabets and numbers as part of their learning process. In this area as well, a well-developed motor skill is an advantage to kids. You can find out more here.

What Parents Can Do

Well, since there is little they can do to help a child develop these skills, parents must monitor their kids well. At certain times in their lives when they are expected to have mastered particular movements, medical attention should be sought if the movements are not forthcoming.