We have long known the benefits of early motor activities for young children’s motor skill development and other developmental domains (Iverson, Journal of Child Language 37: 229–261, 2010; From playpen to playground: The importance of physical play for the motor development of young children, Reston, VA, 2010; From playpen to playground: The importance of physical play for the motor development of young children, Reston, VA, 2010). Not only is motor skill development important in and of itself, but it has been linked to social, language, and cognitive development as well. And, while motor skills develop naturally for most typically developing preschoolers, young children with disabilities often experience delays in this area. Therefore, it is essential to intervene, providing direct and intentional motor programs for children with disabilities during their early years when fundamental motor skills such as locomotion and manipulation develop. These skills form a foundation for skill development in other developmental areas.
In this chapter we will present an overview of motor development including a theory of motor development, motor challenges for children with disabilities, myths about motor development, and research that clearly demonstrates that high-quality motor programs can enhance motor abilities and overall development. In addition, using a developmental framework, we will present key features of high-quality motor interventions with examples of motor programs that exemplify these features. Lastly, we will discuss the implications for practice and policy given our current knowledge in the area motor skill development.
- Motor development
- Evidence-based practice
- Fine motor
- Gross motor
- Children with disabilities
- Early intervention
- Early childhood special education
- Early childhood
- Special education
- Children with special needs
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Favazza, P.C., Siperstein, G.N. (2016). Motor Skill Acquisition for Young Children with Disabilities. In: Reichow, B., Boyd, B., Barton, E., Odom, S. (eds) Handbook of Early Childhood Special Education. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-28492-7_13
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