Teaching a young child how to cut with scissors is a very complex task. Cutting develops the tiny muscles in the palm of the hand. These muscles are used when writing, gripping objects and when dressing. Cutting also enhances hand-eye coordination which is needed for catching and throwing a ball, handwriting and when tying shoelaces. I have been looking for a variety of ways for my son to practice his scissors skills.
As the next letter of our A-Z Fine Motor Play series is J it seemed the perfect opportunity to try Jelly Cutting. Jelly provides a colourful, sticky and scented alternative to cutting paper. I emptied two packets of Hartley’s strawberry flavoured jelly cubes and one pack of orange flavoured jelly into our green sensory bin.
As my son is at the early stages of being able to use scissors I had to give him lots of assistance. Although he could manipulate the scissors correctly he needed me to hold the jelly in place.
He immediately went for the Kushgrip Kid Scissors. These are wonderful child scissors that are easy to use. They cut through the jelly quickly and my son enjoyed seeing his achievement. He cut several cubes of jelly and giggled throughout the activity.
The serrated edge scissors proved to be too tricky when tackling the jelly. The scissors would not open wide enough and they weren’t sharp in order to cut the jelly. He soon returned to the Kushgrip Kid Scissors.
I was surprised by how long my son persevered at the activity. Usually, when we practise cutting he will make a few attempts and then move onto something else. However, he enjoyed the experience of cutting jelly. Over time, he will have better hand-eye coordination and muscle strength in order to be able to hold the jelly himself.