Eye-hand co-ordination is a learned skill that involves using the eyes and hands to work together to perform an action such as catching a ball, drawing a picture, writing, or even reading and decoding.
Parents are often quick to state that outside ball play has little to no value to children that are not “sporty”, but research has proven that eye-hand co-ordination is one of the most important parts of the learning process.
If your child has difficulty following a moving object in front of their eyes or has difficulty moving their eyes from one spot to another, they will possibly also have difficulty moving their eyes along a line of print.
As with all perception skills, many areas could be affected if your child has difficulty with eye-hand co-ordination skills such as proprioception, vestibular, visual processing, and sensory-motor. This affects their balance, handwriting, playing sports and even their pencil grip.
If your child struggles with hand-eye co-ordination and their visual system, you may notice some of the following signs:
Has trouble following a moving object, i.e. catching a ball
Omits words or numbers and loses their place when reading
Has difficulty with fine-motor tasks such as learning handwriting skills, directing a pencil, motor planning etc.
How to improve your child’s eye-hand co-ordination skills: Play, play, play! Alone or even better, spending time with you.
All ball play – kicking a ball into a goal, throwing/catching a ball, bouncing a ball, hitting a ball with a racket/bat, “10 pin bowling”, etc.
String beads etc.