Cubby Houses and Forts Build Strong Gross Motor Skills

Gross motor skills like running, jumping, throwing, catching, kicking and so on are learned movements that children need to practice to get right. Kids use muscles in the arms, legs and trunk to coordinate their gross motor skills. When a child has an outdoor toy, like a cubby house or fort, they develop even stronger gross motor skills because they love practicing running, jumping, climbing and playing all the time.

By encouraging your kids to play outside as often as possible, you are helping them develop their gross motor skills. Here are some tips and activities that will help you motivate your child:

Pretend play allows kids to use all of their muscles. Whether your kids want to be monster, pirate or ballerina, they will use many of their different muscle groups doing all kinds of activities that help practice gross motor skills.

Playing games like Follow the Leader or Simon Says will have a group of children running, jumping, waddling, etc. Each will be working their muscles to keep up with the next, all the while developing their gross motor skills. Add a ball to their games and kids will be kicking or throwing adding more activity with their arms and legs.

When children swing on a swing they use their core muscles to go back and forth. They will extend their leg muscles to engage the core, laying back with their shoulders and head. Then their body will contract. Repeating this process faster will get the swing going and build up their core muscles.

Have you ever seen your child balancing on a line in the sidewalk or a beam? Balance is an excellent gross motor skill! While using a board or plank is practical for this activity, simply drawing a line in the sand to walk along will work too. One has to have good control of their body to stay balanced, so the activity really works your child’s large muscles.

Highlighted Cubby House: Bandicoot Castle Cubby House

cubby house

Your child is going to burst with excitement the first time they are waiting for friends to come sleep out in their cubby house with them. Having a cubby like this one is a real treat, they will feel like they really have a space that is all their own. And they will. Get a table and a set of chairs for the deck and your child will have a place to play games, do puzzles and have a picnic or snack. Sleepovers are going to happen and you won’t have to be up all night listening to the giggling. And the beautiful design will make your backyard the envy of the entire neighborhood.

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