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What Is The Grip Progression In Children?

Megan Paben, MOT, OTR/L, ASDCS

September 30, 2022



What is the grip progression in children?


There is grip progression over time, as noted in Figure 1. 

Figure 1

Starting at one to one and a half years, we see a cylindrical grasp or a palmer-type grasp. At two to three years, they move to a pronated grasp. At three and a half it moves to a modified tripod grasp. This looks very different in individuals, but many times, you will see an all finger or a four finger grasp. Finally, around four and a half to seven years, as they are getting into the school, we see more of a tripod grasp, as the intrinsic muscles tend to strengthen. Even though this is my child and an "OT" kid, he still wants to stabilize a little bit with his middle digit. It is still a functional grasp.

megan paben

Megan Paben, MOT, OTR/L, ASDCS

Megan Paben received her master’s degree in occupational therapy at the College of Saint Mary in Omaha, Nebraska, in 2007. Megan began her career as a school therapist in rural Nebraska, serving several small schools. After two years in the school setting, Megan transitioned into an outpatient pediatric clinic working with a variety of different diagnoses, and worked as the marketing coordinator.  After a couple of years, Megan took over the manager position within the medical clinic. During this time, she worked in a school within the community as well as working with the adult population clinic that was connected to her medical clinic. In 2018, Megan and her family relocated to Colorado, where she is an occupational therapist for a growing school district.  In her current position, Megan is the lead motor staff member. She serves 5 center-based classrooms for social communication as well as affective needs. Megan is a Crisis Prevention Intervention trainer for her district and an Autism Spectrum Disorders Clinical Specialist. 

Related Courses

OT And Special Education Collaboration
Presented by Megan Paben, MOT, OTR/L, ASDCS, Stephanie Rylee, MEd


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Course: #5898Level: Introductory1 Hour
  'Organization of process, explanation of OT role and emphasis on student AND Team related function'   Read Reviews
Occupational therapy and its role in the school system, including collaboration with special education, MTSS/RTI process, and how to make it a full-circle approach, will be discussed in this course. This course will also review deficits seen in the school and what strategies can be provided to school teams.

Naturally Build Reflex Activities Into The School Day
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Course: #5783Level: Introductory1 Hour
  'great use of pictures'   Read Reviews
Participants will identify and review common reflexes and the deficits associated seen in the school setting and learn exercises that can be implemented in the school setting in this introductory course.

Handwriting: It Is A Big Deal
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  'This course was very informational'   Read Reviews
The foundations of the upper extremity mobility needed for written communication will be reviewed in this course. Participants will also learn about fine motor and visual-motor skills that support written communication.

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Course: #3841Level: Introductory1 Hour
  'The strategies for mindfulness, self-regulation, and yoga that I could implement into the classrooms'   Read Reviews
This course will provide you tips and tools to integrate sensory regulation, yoga and mindfulness into the classroom for children of all abilities.

Foundations for School Readiness: Visual and Fine Motor Skills (Day 2)
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Participants will learn how fine motor and visual motor skills and development affect students' ability to access curriculum. Practical strategies and treatment interventions will be presented to improve students' function in academic related tasks.

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