Kindergarten Worksheets > Fine Motor > Mazes for kids
Children need strong fine motor skills - including a strong pincer grip - to successfully learn to write letters and numbers. Once your child is able to hold the pencil correctly, practice tracing lines or maneuvering his pencil through narrow pathways will help him develop these important writing skills. The following writing worksheets will challenge your child to complete a maze by drawing a solid line from the starting picture to the ending picture without touching the sides of the path.
The benefits of completing mazes for kids
Before children can consistently trace or form letters and numerals accurately, they must be able to control their pencil, making the pencil move in precisely the way that they want. Mazes are fun ways for children to practice the important fine motor skill of manipulating a pencil. The space between the borders of the maze gives children some leeway as they move the pencil along the trail. And the maze can seem like a puzzle that intrigues a child. As children gain confidence and pencil control, they can attempt to complete mazes that are more challenging with narrower paths that twist.
Tips for using these mazes for kids worksheets
Introduce the beginning level mazes first, as they have straight lines and the paths are wide. These first mazes give young children the opportunity to understand a new style of worksheet. Before asking your child to use a pencil, ask him to trace the path of the maze with the pointer finger of his dominant hand several times. When your child understands the process of following the path without touching the sides or “walls” of the maze, he is ready to approach the worksheet with his pencil. Remind him to move his pencil slowly to control his line. Your child may need to pick up his hand and move it slightly as he proceeds down the maze. But direct him to try to keep the pencil on the page as he repositions his hand. This will help him maintain control of the line he is drawing.
When your child demonstrates pencil control and confidence, he is ready to tackle the advanced maze worksheets. These sheets have narrower paths that add curves and direction changes to challenge your child’s fine motor control. As with the beginning maze worksheets, ask your child to first trace the path of the maze several times with his dominant pointer finger. When your child picks up the pencil, remind him to move it slowly and deliberately along the path. You may want to copy the advanced maze worksheets several times to give your child multiple opportunities to complete them. As he practices, he will gain control of the pencil and be able to see his progress.
Extra activities to supplement completing the mazes for kids
Try these additional activities to strengthen your child’s ability to manipulate his pencil accurately:
- Use a brightly colored crayon to make a series of dots on a piece of construction paper. Ask your child to use his pencil to draw lines connecting the dots and creating an abstract picture.
- Draw a curvy line using a colored highlighter on a piece of white paper. Then give your child a different colored highlighter and ask him to trace over your line. He will see the original line change color as he traces. Hint: Yellow and pink markers together make orange; blue and yellow markers become green when they are layered.
- Find beginning coloring books with large, bold-lines pictures. Encourage your child to color slowly and carefully, trying to stay within the lines. Remind your child that practice makes perfect. If his pencil crosses the line of the path when he first starts, let him know that this skill will take some time to master.
- Colored pencils are a fun way to practice writing. Using darker colors like blue or red will make it easier for your child to see his line.
- Make sure your child is applying an appropriate amount of pressure to the paper with the pencil. Pressing too hard becomes tiring but not pressing hard enough produces shaky lines.
- Pinching bubble wrap between his thumb and pointer finger to pop the bubbles will strengthen your child’s pincer grip, making it easier for him to control a pencil when writing.
- Frosty car windows in the winter or steamy mirrors in a bathroom are fun places to practice writing. Remind your child to use the pointer finger of his dominant hand when writing.