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Midline Crossing

Kids are a wonder in your life. They teach you something new every day! If not entirely new, at least the logic is totally new to me.

Yesterday we bought a wooden toy plane that had to be painted and constructed from the scratch. Since he is very comfortable with painting and knows the right way to hold and use a brush I was not afraid to give him one. I told him it’s a big boy activity and he will have to stay in the areas I am marking for him.

Two things happened:

  1. He painted so well I had to do some touch ups only and he stayed within the marked areas.
  2. While painting he kept moving from one wing to another. My first reaction was to tell him to stop doing that and finish one wing first and then go to the next. However, I did not do that (one thing I have learned being a mom is to think before I speak) so I let him do what he was doing and to my surprise, he finished painting both the wings with equal finesse.

My learning:

I learned the concept of Midline Crossing!  This was a foreign concept to me until now. Although Crossing midline is something that all of us do every day without even realizing it. You may not realize it because it is an integrated movement in our bodies from childhood.

The ability to cross the midline (a body part -eg hand or foot to be able to spontaneously move over to the other side of the body to work there) is important on the physical level as well as on the brain level.

On the brain level, a lack of midline crossing may indicate that the left and right sides of the brain are not communicating well together. Because each hemisphere carries out different tasks, it is important for each side to communicate with the other in order to coordinate learning and movement.

On a physical level, when your child spontaneously crosses the midline with the dominant hand, then the dominant hand is going to get the practice that it needs to develop good fine motor skills and the other hand becoming the assistant hand.

Thinking back when my son was painting, he kept forgetting about his assistant hand. I would gently guide his assistant hand and things got much easier for him.

Stay tuned and I will soon be sharing some helpful activity ideas that could help your child develop midline crossing skills.

 

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