Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Fine Motor Skill Activity: Threading Cheerios with Yarn

Assalamu alaikum,

I was searching the web for activities to do with children who are 15 month olds and I saw this activity where they suggested using yarn and Fruit Loops to have the child work on threading (i.e. fine motor skill practice which is critical later when the child learns to write insha'Allah among other things). The idea seemed like it would be worth trying.

I don't use Fruit Loops in the classroom for health reasons but Honey Nut Cheerios are healthier so I grabbed some Honey Nut Cherrios, yarn and tape to make the end of the yarn easy to thread through the Cheerios insha'Allah, and to tape the other end of the yarn down to the table insha'Allah. I grabbed a work mat (to define the work space insha'Allah) and I set it up, eagerly expecting little hands to happily have a go at it.

You know what ended up happening? The yarn stayed nicely glued to the table and....the Honey Nut Cheerios got eaten - without being threaded on the yarn! *smile* And I demonstrated how to thread the Cheerios with the yarn but alas, only the Cheerios were of interest. Well, admittedly I didn't try it with 15 month olds but still I thought, close enough eh? I guess not (smile).

I'm going to leave the activity out for a few days and try it again to see what happens (of course I'll put new Cheerios out each day insha'Allah) but for now I will 'follow the child' and see what happens because right now as I'm typing this I'm observing little hands with a child sized cloth busy and totally absorbed with wiping the table clean masha'Allah. Next actvity I'll introduce insha'Allah: why, wiping up spills of course insha'Allah!

I almost forgot: I do not use food in crafts because Islamically it is not permissible because it is a waste of food. In activities (such as this one) however, when food is used, please allow your child to eat his/her work (smile) insha'Allah.

Also, in Montessori education, the term "follow the child" refers to allowing the child's interests and natural desire to learn, direct his/her choices in a well-prepared environment. The teacher/parent observes the child and based on what the child appears to be naturally drawn to, the teacher/parent provides activities in that domain insha'Allah, allowing the child to follow his/her natural interests. As the child's interests change, the teacher/parent continues to provide new/different activities that allow the child to learn/explore his/her current interest insha'Allah.

Enjoy insha'Allah!


  1. As Salaamu Alaykum, YOu know another good threading tool for a bit older children (2-3yrs) would be a pipe cleaner insha Allah. Good Idea! Oh yeah, another good threader is plastic lanyard which I used for my younger children when giving them lacing activities,masha Allah.

  2. Salam aleikom,

    MashAllah I love your blog, great work. What do you suggest is a good activity for high energy 22 months old boy?

  3. Waalaikum assalam wa rahmtullahi wa barakatuh,

    Dear sis, Jazakillahu khayr and I'm happy you enjoy the blog. For an energetic 22 month old boy? I think I will need a little bit more information insha'Allah. For example: what are things your son has shown he likes especially well, does any one thing or activity hold his attention for extended periods of time, and are you still able to get outdoors where you live insha'Allah (i.e. is it not too cold yet)?

    Jazakillahu khayr

  4. Asalaamu alaykum just came across your site today and i think its great, thanks for sharing this info with us. how can I learn about montesseri? and are you a teacher? Jazaki Allahu Khair may Allah bless your efforts, Ameen

  5. waalaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

    Ahlan dear sister Umm Binty,
    Alhamdulillah, you enjoy the blog. For learning about Montessori...well...there are tons of places but maybe if you tell me which age group you're interested in I can give you specific links that would meet your needs insha'Allah. And, yes, alhamdulillah, I am a certified Montessori teacher. Jazakillahu Khayr dear sis and hope you visit often insha'Allah.

  6. asalaamu alaykum

    I have a 2 year old and a 4 month old (girls) Alhamdulillah

  7. Salaam alaikum sister,

    I'm being a little big cheeky but I was wondering... who ate all the cheerios?
    You should try to do the same but with pasta, they won't get eaten.

  8. Waalaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

    Jazakillahu Khayr dear sister Maz. A child who, at the time, was almost 15 months old ate the Cheerios (smile).

    I usually do not try these activities with pasta unless it is cooked b/c many children at this age put whatever is in their hand into their mouth and thus the uncooked pasta would be a choking hazard and waallahu alim.
    However, if a parent knows their child does not do this (hand to mouth with objects) then this would be up to their discretion but I would caution to supervise the child closely for the choking hazard issue I mentioned.

    Jazakillahu khayr dear sis! And oh, later I did have a few Cheerios myself (hehe).

  9. assalamu alaykum,
    We like the activity alhamdulillah. JazakhaAllahu khayr sister.
    About montessory, sister could you please give some specific links that teach montessory activities suitable for ages 1-3.Again May Allah reward you.ameen.

  10. assalaamu alaikum sister
    i just came across this site while looking for good craft for kindies... Masha Allah your work is very good.
    May Allah reward you for your effort. Aameen

  11. Waalaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

    Jazakillahu Khayr dear sis. Ahlan! Insha'Allah, you enjoy and benefit from the resources here. If there is something that you would like and you do not see it, if I can do it, I will. Please ask insha'Allah.


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