Who Benefits from An Intervention Program on Foundational Skills for Handwriting Addressed to Kindergarten Children and First Graders?
Zanin Scaratti R
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This study examined the effectiveness of a 10-wk intervention program based on occupational therapy principles on visual-motor integration skills and fine motor abilities in kindergartners and first graders. We recruited 55 students tested three times with the Visual-Motor Integration Test (VMI) and Movement Assessment Battery for Children-2 (MABC-2): before the intervention (T1), post-intervention (T2) and one month later (T3). Research findings: Significant improvements were found on VMI between T1 and T2, particularly for kindergartners. Neither group of children demonstrated changes on manual dexterity scores. The present study showed that the intervention program led to different changes in the at-risk of motor impairment group than in the not at-risk children. Results indicated that games and stimulation activities helped children below the 16th percentile over time in the manual dexterity domain. A gender effect was observed, with female children increasing their abilities over time more than male peers. Future research should concentrate on stimulating fine motor skills in hand manipulation and test how these abilities influence graphomotor skills and handwriting over time. Finally, more research is needed to determine the impact of activities and games carried out in educational settings.
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