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BEGINNING CUTTING SKILLS
 

DEVELOPING HAND MUSCLES
Before children can cut properly, they need to first build up the muscles in their hands.
Do simple finger plays with your child, especially ones that include opening and closing their fingers.
Let your child practice squeezing water out of sponges.
Give your child some squeeze type clothespins.  Have him snap them onto a paper plate or piece of cardboard.
Encourage your child to tear pieces of paper.  Use old magazine pages or old newspapers.
 
FIRST SNIPS
Hold a piece of paper rigid for your child and have her cut in the middle.
Hold a piece of paper so that your child can snip off the corners.  This can go on for a long time, because with each cut, two more corners are created.
Give your child strips of paper 1” wide.  Have her cut off sections of paper.
Let your child roll playdough into long tubes and cut it in sections.
Let your child cut plastic drinking straws.
Give your child pieces of light weight sandpaper to cut.
Let your child cut index cards in half.
Give your child thin ropes of playdough to cut.

 

ADVANCED BEGINNERS
Give your child a 2” x 8” piece of paper and show him how to fringe along one side.
Let your child practice cutting out toys in an old toy catalog, or pictures in magazines.
When children are learning to cut across a wide piece of paper, you can show them how to keep their cutting arm still while they move the paper through the scissors.
When your child wants to cut at angles, you will need to show him how to stop part way through a cut and move his paper.
When your child wants to cut out simple shapes, you can make the process easier for him by folding the paper and drawing on a half shape.  This way your child only has to cut half of the shape.
 
KEEP IN MIND
Provide your child with small, easy to hold scissors with edges that cut easily.
Provide slightly heavy paper for your child to practice beginning cutting.
Don’t continue if your child is not interested in cutting.
Don’t use worksheet pages with beginning cutters.
Have scissors and scraps of paper readily available for your child to use at any time.
 
SCISSOR ART PROJECTS -
Go to the Art Station and look for Scissor Art.