What are gross motor skills?
For optimal development, preschoolers need movement breaks. We’ve talked about developing fine motor skills, those smaller muscle groups. You can revisit that post here: Help Your Child Improve Fine Motor Skills At Home
Gross motor skills involve the large muscles of the body that enable such functions as walking, kicking, sitting upright, lifting, and throwing a ball. ~AboutHealth
Motor Games and Activities for Preschoolers
One person3 gives directions such as “run to the big tree, touch the bark, and come back,” or “run over to the slide, go down one time, and come back” or “run around the tree three times.” Great not only for gross motor skills, but for listening and following directions.
Blow up several balloons and toss them back and forth. Try moving closer to each other and farther away from each other. Try using different body parts (hands, elbows, heads) or blowing the balloon up in the air. See how many times your preschooler can bounce the balloon up before it falls to the ground.
Hula Hoop Fun
Invest in several different colored hula hoops; lay them on the ground. Give instructions such as “run to the red hula hoop and pretend to be a car,” or “hop over to the green hula hoop like a bunny.”
A Simple Billy Goats Gruff Gross Motor Activity, B-Inspired Mama
After making our own Billy Goats Gruff paper masks, we just had to get outside and have some fun with them! We decided to pretend to be Billy Goats trying to cross a bridge. This simple Billy Goats Gruff gross motor activity was quick to set up and allowed for over 45 minutes of pretend play!
Gross motor activities for preschoolers are a MUST in my book.
Preschoolers aren’t quite as hard as toddlers to plan activities for, but there still are some limitations to what you can do. And getting their little bodies moving helps a ton!
A gross motor activity to practice skip counting by tens.
We incorporate colors into most of our gross motor and active play ideas. We’d love to share our colorful ways to get kids moving!
We are moving on to the second category in our Play Ideas series as part of #100daysofplay with Chad Valley. This time, I’m sharing active play ideas to help develop gross motor skills and use up energy.