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Visual Motor Integration

What is Visual Motor Integration?

Visual motor integration (VMI) is the ability to perceive information from the eyes, process that information in the brain, and move the body accordingly. These skills are important to develop fine and gross motor skills. Gross motor skills are the movements of larger muscles in the arms and legs that allow us to jump, catch/throw balls, and ride a bike. Fine motor skills are the movements of small muscles in the fingers and wrists that allow us to write, tie shoes, use utensils, and cut paper. These two motor skills work together to allow an individual to participate in daily activities.

Common signs a child has poor VMI:

  • Poor handwriting

  • Difficulties with buttons, zippers, and shoe-tying

  • Difficulty coloring inside the lines

  • Difficulty catching or kicking a ball

  • Poor body awareness

Fun Activities to Improve VMI at Home:

  • Paint 

  • Have your child complete a paint-by-number of their favorite animal or show

  • Jigsaw Puzzles

  • Origami 

  • Create paper airplanes or follow the steps to create simple origami

  • iSpy

  • Have your child find different items around the house and write them 

  • Legos 

  • Make a design and have your child replicate the pattern 

If your child is experiencing difficulties with visual motor integration, consult with an occupational therapist to receive the resources, education, and skilled interventions needed to support participation in daily life activities. 

Consider reading more about visual motor integration skills with this evidence-based resource.


Carsone, B., Green, K., Torrence, W., & Henry, B. (2021). Systematic review of visual motor integration in children with developmental disabilities. Occupational Therapy International, 2021, 1801196. doi: 10.1155/2021/1801196

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