Sugar Aunts: Intrinsic Muscle Strengthening with Egg Cartons

Intrinsic Muscle Strengthening with Egg Cartons

Recently, I shared how intrinsic muscle strength benefits handwriting and specifically a functional grasp on the pencil.  Today, I've got a super easy way to work on endurance with the lumbrical muscles that are used in maintaining a nice pencil grasp.  This will enable a child to write at appropriate speeds and lengths of time without fatiguing and allow a child to color in a picture without stopping becasue their hands are tired.  The bonus to today's activity is that the strengthening tool is very easy to re-create and (almost) completely free.

This would be an awesome compliment to our recent 31 Days of Occupational Therapy activities using Free or Almost Free Materials!

Work on pencil grasp by strengthening the intrinsic muscles of the hands including the lumbricals using a recycled egg carton and straws!



Intrinsic Muscles of the Hands Lumbricals Strengthening Exercise

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For this activity, we used a recycled egg carton, a wooden skewer, and cut pieces of straws.

Use the top of the egg carton and poke holes using the wooden skewer.  Wiggle the skewer until the holes are larger.  Cut the straws into one inch sized pieces, and you are ready to go!

Work on pencil grasp by strengthening the intrinsic muscles of the hands including the lumbricals using a recycled egg carton and straws!

Show your kiddo how to poke the straw pieces into the holes.  We used both sides of the egg carton, but using the inside of the egg carton sections especially works on the lumbrical muscles in the hand.  Holding the small straw sections requires a tripod grasp and when the child is required to push the straw through the hole in the section of the egg carton, they are positioning their hand in an Intrinsic Plus Position.  

Ask your child to hold several straw pieces in their hand at once to address in-hand manipulation. This skill is needed to manipulate the pencil and rotate the pencil during handwriting tasks.

We cut off the lid of our egg carton for this activity.  It was a good way to work on bilateral hand coordination which is necessary for holding the paper and pencil with two different hands during a hand writing task. 

Once the straws are partially in the holes of the egg carton, your child can press them the rest of the way through the hole, utilizing finger isolation.  Then, turn the egg carton over and use a tripod grasp to pull the straws the rest of the way through the holes.

Work on pencil grasp by strengthening the intrinsic muscles of the hands including the lumbricals using a recycled egg carton and straws!

Read about how and why this is great for handwriting here.

Looking for more ways to recycle an egg carton?  Try these: 

 egg cartons 
Egg Carton Mache Molds by Teach me Mommy 
Flowers by The Gingerbread House 
Daffodils by Nemscok Farms 
Space Station by Peakle Pie 
Egg Carton Mosaic Art  by Our Whimsical Days

Work on pencil grasp by strengthening the intrinsic muscles of the hands including the lumbricals using a recycled egg carton and straws!

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MORE handwriting exercises you will love:

 fine motor writing activity Pencil Grasp Activity Pencil Grasp Exercise Thumb opposition activity

 Magnetic Spoons and Handwriting Game

1 comment :

  1. What a creative idea! And most people have this stuff already at their house!

    ReplyDelete

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