Finger Plays for Toddlers

    Finger Plays for Toddlers

    In this article Finger Plays for Toddlers we offer 5 sets of finger exercises with rhymes to do with your baby for language development and speech delay correction.

    As we know language development of young children directly depends on how the finger fine movements are formed (fine motor skills). The majority of children with speech delay have inaccurate, uncoordinated movements of fingers.  So surely play finger plays with your baby.

    Preliminarily teach your baby about the finger names. Each complex consists of 5 exercises and one rhyme, which is being learnt within a week (5 complexes – 5 weeks). Then start repeating. First do finger gymnastics, and then read the rhyme. While listening to the rhymes, your baby will be doing the relevant movements gradually memorizing the text.

    If your baby cannot yet do the movements by himself, do all the exercises with his hands.

    Series 1

    1. Palms on the table (fingers are apart and together on the count of “one-two”).
    2. Palm-fist-edge (on the count of “one, two, three”).
    3. Fingers say hello to each other (fingers of both hands are connected: the thumb with the thumb, the index finger with the index finger, etc. on the count of one, two, three, four, five, etc.)
    4. Little man (the index and the middle fingers of the right hand and then these of the left hand are running around the table).
    5. Children run a race (the same movement as in the fourth exercise, but both hands do the movement simultaneously).

    Little finger, little finger
    Tap, tap, tap.
    Point up,
    Point down.
    Put it on your head
    (nose, arm, chin, etc.)

    Do the actions with every finger from thumb to little one, each time tapping on a table (knee, arm, etc.), putting it up and down, and touching a new body part with it.

    Series 2

    1. Goat (extend the index and the little fingers of the right hand, then of the left one).
    2. Goatling (the same exercise, but it is being performed with both hands at a time).
    3. Spectacles (form two circles with the thumbs and the index fingers of both hands and put them together).
    4. Rabbits (pull up the index and the middle fingers, other fingers are connected with each other).
    5. Trees (raise both hands palms to the body, fingers are wide spread).

    5 little ducks went out one day
    Over the hills and far away.
    4 little ducks went out one day
    Over the hills and far away.
    3 little ducks went out one day
    Over the hills and far away etc.
    All the ducks are away
    Wave bye-bye!

    Unbend each finger of one hand from thumb to little one when saying about 5 ducks, then bend all the fingers back in a fist and then only 4,3,2,1 fingers are unbent, others remain in the fist. At the end of the rhyme unbend all the fingers and wave bye-bye.  Do the same with the other hand.

    Series 3

    1. Little flag (pull up a thumb, other fingers are straight and connected together, put the thumb down and wave the other hands).
    2. Birds (a thumb is connected with each finger alternately).
    3. Nest (connect both hands in the form of a bowl, fingers are squeezed tight).
    4. Flower (the same action, but fingers are spread).
    5. The roots of a plant (connect the back of the hands and fingers together, put fingers down).

    Daddy finger, daddy finger, where are you?
    Here I am, here I am. How do you do?
    Mommy finger, Mommy finger, where are you?
    Here I am, here I am. How do you do?
    Brother finger, Brother finger, where are you?
    Here I am, here I am. How do you do?
    Sister finger, Sister finger, where are you?
    Here I am, here I am. How do you do?
    Baby finger, Baby finger, where are you?
    Here I am, here I am. How do you do?
    All the family, all the family, where are you?
    Here we are, here we are. How do you do?

    Ask your baby to bend the fingers of one hand in a fist, then listening to the rhyme, straighten them alternately starting with the thumb. When saying the last lines, wiggle all the fingers at a time.

    Series 4

    1. Bee (turn around the index finger on one hand and then on the other one).
    2. Bees (the same exercise is performed with two hands).
    3. Little boat (press palms together, the ends of fingers are facing up, connect them tight).
    4. Sunrays (cross the fingers, hands up, spread the fingers).
    5. Passengers (crossed fingers are put down, back of hands – up, thumbs extended upwards).

    This little piggy went to market,
    This little piggy stayed at home,
    This little piggy had roast beef,
    This little piggy had none,
    And this little piggy went ‘wee, wee, wee’ all the way home.

    Let your baby unbend all the fingers alternately from the thumb to the little finger while you are saying the rhyme. Then do the same with the other hand.

    Series 5

    1. Castle (on the count of one palms are put together, and on the count of two fingers are crossed).
    2. Fox and hare (fox is slinking – all the fingers are slowly “stepping” forward on the table; hare is runing away – fingers are quickly moving backwards).
    3. Spider (bent fingers are slowly moving on the table).
    4. Butterfly (connect the back of hands together and wave tightly connected fingers).
    5. Count up to four (thumb is alternately connected with each finger).

    Caterpillar, caterpillar, (one hand crawls along the other one up to the shoulder like a caterpillar bending and unbending)
    Daughter of a butterfly.
    She crawls on the grass, (the same action with the other hand)
    And eats leaves
    Yum, yum, yum, yum. (rub the tummy with a hand)
    Now she’s fed up
    And laid down to sleep (one hand in a fist, the other one covers it)
    She woke up (slowly spread the fingers)
    Turned into a butterfly (cross the wrists, now palms are the wings)
    And flew up high! (wrists or forearms are crossed, the palms are waving).
    Fly, butterfly, fly, fly, fly! (You can slowly raise the elbows for the butterfly to fly higher and higher).


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