Arches shape your hand when you are holding a pen or pencil. Arches allow for skilled movement of your fingers when you are using a pen or pencil. 

These activities help develop your arches: 

  • Placing small things into your palm, such as rice or small rocks 
  • Holding a small ball in your palm; maintaining hand position after the ball is removed 
  • Shaking dice by cupping your hands together so you can hear the dice rattle 
  • Practicing doing the “ltsy Bitsy Spider” finger play 
  • Cutting clay with a plastic knife; placing your index finger on top of the knife 
  • Doing screwdriver activities like those found in Erector® sets or other take-apart toys 
  • Outlining or coloring shapes 
  • Holding the handle of a cup with your fingertips 
  • Opening and closing jar lids or laundry detergent caps 
  • Molding clay into the palm of your hand; rolling the clay into large balls with your hands facing each other and with your fingers slightly curled toward your palm 
  • Tearing newspaper into strips 
  • Drawing on a vertical Magna Doodle® 
  • Building towers with small plastic cups or blocks 
  • Using a scissors to cut materials like cardboard or manila folders 

Ask your therapist if you have any questions about the activities listed above.

Ideas adapted from Mary Benbow’s hand skills. 

This information is for educational purposes only. It is not intended to replace the advice of your health care providers. If you have any questions, talk with your doctor or others on your health care team.