This material is aimed at assisting a child with coordination and self-control. A hammering, or sometimes referred to as a pounding toy, can come in a variety of forms such as just hammer and peg, hammer & ball tracking path underneath, and depending on age can be hammer and nail/pin.
The child must practice hand-eye coordination to accurately hit the object, thus pushing it down. To do this well it must be practiced to increase accuracy of the objective (i.e. peg down or ball through the hole).
What Skills Does Hammer Toy Work on?
Self-control is developed while using this material as they must use the right amount of pressure to get the peg to go down. Too soft and it won’t move, too hard will make accuracy more difficult to achieve.
It is self-correcting, for if they miss or don’t hit hard enough then the peg will not go down which is their goal.
As they collaboratively work on self-control and coordination their accuracy and ability to complete the objective will occur more easily with practice.
Is hammering a fine motor skill?
Hammering is a fine motor skill that is attributed with self-control and coordination due to the hand-eye coordination needed to reach the objective of hitting, and pushing the object down. This skill becomes more finely tuned with the mastery of pressure and speed while hitting said object (i.e. peg, ball, nail, or pin).
Wooden Hammer and Peg Toy
We’ve used the Melissa & Doug wooden peg and hammer toy on our Montessori shelf for a few years now.
It has been a reoccurring favorite material to work on and master from the age of 10 months to my 3 year old still enjoying to master the speed, pressure, and accuracy.
Being a wooden toy it has been able to endure many years of use while our boys have worked on mastering self-control and coordination while using this version of Montessori aligned hammering toy.
I would definitely recommend a wooden version of a hammer or pounding toy to increase the longevity of the material.
Ball and Hammer Toy
If a child is also showing interest in tracking materials, then a hammer and ball toy might suit their interests better.
This flow would have 4 parts to it:
- Place ball on hole
- Hit ball with hammer
- Track ball down the path
- Pick ball up and repeat
A pounding material such as this would be more usually be more suited towards an older child than a baby.
Hammer and Pins/Pegs
Using a hammer with pegs and something they can hammer them into would be something to consider for an older child who wants to master self-control and coordination even further with hammering/pounding.
Tap and tack board is great for this, it comes with shapes and pin-board for child to use with hammer and pins. For older children this gives them opportunity for sorting colors, shapes, or making a picture like show in photo above.
How We Montessori demonstrates how this hammer and pin material can be set-up for a toddler if you are interested in a pin-board option.
Hammering Toy Options for Toddlers
Now that you have seen the types of hammer toy options you can consider for your child, here is a list of our top picks of hammering toy options for toddlers in 2021
- Melissa & Doug Hammer Toy
- Hape Rainbow Pounder
- Melissa & Doug ball toy
- PLAN Wooden Hammer Balls
- Match & Tap Hammer Box Lovery
- Wooden Hammer & Bamboo Pegs
- Tap and Tack Board (for advanced toddlers)
All of these options are top choices depending on where your child is at with their interests and abilities.
Every child is different, so observe your child and see where they are at and select a material that is appropriate.
Hammers and pounding toys are great material for mastering hand-eye coordination. Watch as your child progresses at becoming more accurate over time and see the joy in their eyes as they realize their capabilities of learning!