Category: Classroom

Improving Pencil Grasp Exercise

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Improving Pencil Grasp is an occupational therapy exercise meant to help a child develop the functional skill of holding a pencil in proper form, aiming for more efficient and legible handwriting. This activity will help improve a child’s fine motor skills as well as cognitive skills, such as handwriting abilities, building social skills through sensory movement, building functional skills such as handwriting, cutting with scissors and self-care, helping the development of small muscles in the hands. In order to improve a thumb wrap grasp (where the child’s thumb is wrapped around the pointer finger), a child needs to strengthen the opposition muscle, Opponens Pollicis, along with Flexor Pollicis Longus to bend the tip of the thumb or the Interphalnageal Joint (IP Joint) of the thumb. Strengthening the intrinsic muscles along with addressing an open web space will improve IP flexion in pencil grasp.

Technical Specifications: 

Step 1: Make small balls of play dough and gather about 30 Flower Beads

Step 2: Allow the child to press each individual flower bead into anywhere on the ball of play dough, using a bent thumb and pointer finger, holding the flower bead by its edges.

30 Chunky Multi-Color Acrylic Lucite Bell Flower Beads- Assorted 16mm is the product used for this exercise because the of their length (16 millimeters), found on


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Improving Pencil Grasp Exercise