Tuesday, February 16, 2010

When is Coordination Mastered?

How do you know when your child has mastered coordination?  Basically, if s/he is able to truly follow your lead, in familiar complementary and familiar frameworks, then coordination is mastered.

Beware of the tendency to "psuedo-coordinate" with your child.  Your child should be able to follow your lead, without your needing to hold onto them, and without your adjusting your actions to theirs. 

For complementary coordination, your child should be able to fulfill his role independently while following your lead.  If you are sweeping the floor, he is able to move the dustpan to the appropriate place by watching you and following your lead.  You do not need to be moving quickly, and it is acceptable to be doing the activity in a familiar setting with familiar materials.  You should not have to cue your child as to where to go.  S/he should be able to watch you and follow. 

For parallel coordination, it is not necessary for your child to be perfectly synchronized with you, like the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders.  Basically, we just want to see that s/he can stop and start when you stop and start, and that s/he can speed up or slow down when you do.  Your child should also be able to follow simple variations, like skipping or hopping (as long as there are no motor planning issues). 

If your child is able to do these things consistently, then you are ready to work on collaboration. 


The Glasers said...

Life get sooooo much easier when our children can coordinate WITH us!

Penny said...

Amen, Mrs Glaser!