Toggle site contrast Toggle Contract

In-hand manipulation

What is in-hand manipulation?

It’s when you use your fingers and thumb to move an object into position for an activity using one hand.Ā For example, picking up a pen and moving it into position with your fingers for writing.

How to help your child develop their in-hand manipulation

The following activities will help your child move objects from their fingers to their palm.

Finger to palm activities

Using small objects like coins, beads, marble, see how many objects your child can pick up using a pincer grip. Then, see if they can move the objects into their hand without dropping any or using the table, their body of their other hand. Objects should be secured in their hand with the middle, ring and little fingers.


  • getting coins out of a purse and holding them in their hand or picking coins up from the table
  • crumpling paper with one hand
  • using their dominant hand to pick up pegs one at a time and put into the palm of their hand, with their non-dominant hand behind their back.

Palm to finger activities

Practice moving:

  • coins from palm to finger tips to place in a slot or purse
  • pegs from their palm and place onto a board.

Rotation activities


  • removing and putting on small jar lids
  • turning cubes or dice to get to the right side.