Scissor Skills

Children should be sitting at a table to use scissors, preferably with their feet supported. Use firmer, smaller pieces of paper at first.

The following activities can be used to encourage your child to practice the movements needed for using scissors.


  • Squeeze sponges in the bath or water tray.
  • Use items such as tweezers or BBQ tongs to pick up small objects.
  • Use large ‘meat basters’ in water play.•Bath toys could be placed in the bath as a ‘target’ to see if it is possible to hit them when squirting water from the ‘meat baster’.
  • Practise scrunching and tearing tissue paper. These could then be used to create a collage or picture.
  • Play with different size clothes pegs, for example putting the pegs on and taking them off items of clothing, play how many pegs can they get around one of their clean socks, or how many pegs can they get around the top of an opened cereal box. 
  • Practise cutting play-dough. Roll playdough into a sausage shape and then cut using scissors.
  • Snip small squares of a strip of paper and use for a collage.
  • Snip drinking straws into pieces and use for a collage.
  • Snip longer strips and make into a paper chain. Make holes with a hole punch and make into a paper chain.•Use wool and make a pattern, then ask the child to cut the wool pattern out.
  • Snip around the edge of old birthday cards; then move onto cutting around pictures