I love, love, love this simple, but effective activity to strengthen fine motor skills! The Cutting Jar is a resource that I use in my classroom all year long for simple scissor skills practice with my students. I know your Pre-K and Kindergarten students will love it too.
*For more fine motor skills fun and practice, grab our Kindergarten Math & Literacy Clip Cards for the Year!
Simple Scissor Skills Practice
The Cutting Jar is a fantastic resource for quick scissor skills practice. Students will grab a strip of paper and cut along the lines into the jar. It’s that simple!
We collect the cut scraps of paper in the jar and see how long it takes us to fill it up. Students watch it fill up each day, and the class loves having a goal they can work toward together!
I always make a big deal when we reach the top of the jar and will often give out stickers to celebrate!
The only supplies you need for this activity is a jar or tub, some scissors, and scrap paper! Using a clear container is fun, because the kiddos can see how full the jar is getting, but anything will work!
Prep couldn’t be any easier! Just gather your scrap paper and draw lines for students to cut.
How do I use it in the classroom?
I really like to use The Cutting Jar first thing in the morning, when the children walk in the door. After they put their backpacks away, they grab a strip of paper and cut away before heading to their seat. This works out great, because you only have a few students using the materials at a time.
But you could use it at any time of the day!
Options for Differentiation
Fine motor skills grow and develop over time with practice, so how do you keep this activity changing and challenging throughout the year? Start with really thick lines for students to cut (or no lines at all).
Then, as students master cutting on these lines, make the lines thinner. Once they’ve mastered thin lines, make the lines curvy.
As we progress in the year and kiddos are at different levels of motor skill development, I often put the strip of paper I want each child to work on in their cubby. That way, students can be working on the same scissor skills practice but at a level that will help them be successful.
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