This activity is good for the development of muscular coordination and the pincer grasp (which is important to develop because children will need this when learning to write/hold a pencil). This activity is ideal for infants aged 12 to 36 months. To my knowledge this is Montessori in its origin...waAllahu Alim.
- Get a wooden/wicker basket.
- Fill it with wooden clothes pins
- Sit facing the child. Take a clothes pin and open it fully, making sure the child sees this.
- Clip the clothes pin to the edge of the basket.
- Repeat this with 3 or 4 other clothes pins. Make sure the child sees each time that you fully open the clothes pin.
- Invite the child to pin the remaining clothes pins.
As much as possible, when doing activities, try to limit your talking to what is essential. This is to allow the child to concentrate and focus on the task (otherwise the child will be focusing on your voice).
Here's an example (from: The Wonder Years)