Building Skills + Enhancing Lives

Paper Crumble Activity at Masakhane Primary


This week our early learners practiced their hand skills by crumbling tissue paper into little balls and creating a picture scene with it. This craft activity enhances dexterity and the use of the tripod fingers in preparation for writing activities.

Thumb, index and middle finger have to work in collaboration with each other to hold a crayon or pencil and the action of crumbling the paper gets the fingers ready to work as a team.

In order to develop a dynamic tripod grasp children need to develop many skills such as good shoulder and hand strength as an example. The grasp development goes through stages from

  • a fisted grasp when the young child uses mainly the fist and shoulder movement to move the crayon
  • onto the palmar grasp as the toddler develops more control in arm and hand muscles and then 
  • around 4 years old, the child develops a 5-finger grasp and as she develops stronger muscles, coordination and control the tripod grasp is developing

The activity also involves the eyes as the children have to match the various colours onto the picture. 

The kids worked in groups and were encouraged to help each other in the process. 

We spoke about the different colours and the scenes that were created. The kids made up stories and the activity was extended into imaginative storytelling and sharing of ideas. 

It is amazing to see how the stories reflect each child’s personality and temperament and how much we as adults can learn from observing and listening to what children have to say.

“We are storytelling creatures, and as children we acquire language to tell those stories that we have inside us” – Jerome Bruner




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