Academic Master

Human Resource And Management

Differences In The Rate Of Motor Skills Development

A motor skill is an ability that is acquired by a baby to help in skilful predetermined movement successfully as a result of repeated practice or gained experience. The more a specific motor skill is trained, the better its execution becomes. Gross motor skills are the ability of the baby to make large movements such as crawling, running, jumping, etc. Fine motor skills are the ability of the baby to carry out smaller actions such as picking up items between a finger and a thumb, wriggling toes, using lips and tongues to taste objects, etc.

Motor skills development begins at the head as the baby learns to control movements in the face, tongue, lips, and mouth(Baxter, 2014). This is followed by control of the neck muscles, then develops shoulder muscles, followed by back muscles in that order. Gross motor skills develop fine motor skills. According to Haddad (2018), each individual baby develops differently, although they have the same specific developmental milestones. There are various factors that influence the rate of motor skill development in children. Prenatal factors, such as Nutrition deficiency of the mother leading to a lack of folic acid and iodine, cause brain damage and poor learning ability (Caton,2017). Drugs such as alcohol and maternal can lead to poor prenatal development, hence challenges in motor skill acquisition.

Toxins from medical drugs and environmental toxins such as lead, mercury, arsenic, etc., harm the baby before birth and may cause the child to have low cognitive ability. According to Wardle( 2103), some hereditary conditions may cause the child to be born with defects. Congenital diseases such as HIV, syphilis, rubella, etc, may cause serious health issues in the baby, impairing the ability to acquire motor skills at the normal rate (Haddad, 2018). Birth process factors such as trauma during birth due to complications may lead to brain damage affecting motor skills acquisition, low Gender plays an important role in cognitive maturation and hence boys and girls tend to develop and learn differently. As Canton (2017) explains, gender stereotyping may also influence motor skill acquisition, where the girls get different toys that will stimulate them differently. For example, the choice of toys for a baby boy is more stimulating than for a baby girl.

The development of motor skills takes place at different rates due to prenatal conditions that may affect the baby’s cognitive ability. Postnatal factors may also affect the babies negatively, leading to delays in the development of motor skills. A baby’s gender will also influence motor skills development to some extent. The environmental stimuli will facilitate motor skill development.


Baxter, C.,(2014) Prenatal risk factors for developmental delay in Newcomer children, Caring For Kids New to Canada, Canadian Pediatric Society, retrieved from

Caton, G.(2017). What’s the difference between a fine motor and gross motor skills? Baby center, retrieved from,

Haddad, D.,(2018). Biological factors influence Child development, Very well family, retrieved from,

Wardle, F. (2013). Collaboration with families and communities. San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc.



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