Scissor Skill Practice: Cutting Playdough

Using scissors helps to improve hand eye coordination and is great for building muscle tone that will be required for writing later on in schooling years.

It is also something that requires a bit of practice!

Often little ones may start to show an interest in cutting but can find it really hard and often get frustrated when they can’t manage to do it.

If you have a child who is showing an interest and you are wanting to introduce using scissors as part of school readiness then an easy way for them to start would be to practice with playdough.

This is one of our favourite materials to practice cutting because it’s easy for children to hold and the texture is fun to cut!

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Rolling the playdough into a ‘snake’ is a good one to start with. You could even make indents into the snake and encourage them to cut the lines. Or your little one might simply enjoy just cutting it up as they want.

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Initially, some children can find it challenging to hold the scissors in a vertical position. Using the ‘snake’ is a really good way to help correct this.

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Keep in mind that depending on their age, some of the younger children will be too little to use the finger holes properly. In this case it is fine for them to use the scissors in ways that work for them.  As they get older encourage them to place their thumb and fingers in the correct holes.
Little things…parents can add language to encourage their children in mastering their scissor skills for example, saying things like “Open – Close” to encourage and explain the notions of opening and closing the scissors.
Always make sure you use age appropriate scissors, starting with bladeless scissors are good if parents are worried about using sharp blades. And as always, adult supervision is required.