Stages of the Programme
This stage is for children who are not yet using or interested in using scissors or pencils and need a bit more practice with general fine motor skills. The activities are designed to help with the hand and finger strength and coordination needed to use scissors. These activities can be used alongside stage one to help with preparedness for cutting.
- The child pays visual attention to the object they are holding (i.e. they are looking at the item).
- The child can actively control the opening and closing of their hand during fine motor activities which use two hands.
Stage 1 – Learning to snip
This stage is designed for children who are not able to cut with scissors at all. These children might use two hands on the scissors and will likely need an adult to hold the paper. The activities are designed to support correct hand position on scissors, holding the paper and snipping. This stage can be used alongside the pre-scissor skills.
- The child will hold their scissors with their thumb facing the ceiling.
- The child will hold onto their paper when cutting 50% of the time.
- The child can snip paper with scissors.
- The child can make three cuts in a sequence with scissors.
Stage 2 – Learning to cut lines and shapes
This stage is designed for children who have mastered basic snipping skills, but need to learn to cut on lines and to cut out shapes. The activities start with straight lines but progress towards cutting out a circle. If children are not yet snipping with scissors, they should start at Stage 1.
- The child will hold their paper and scissors with their thumb facing the ceiling 100% of the time.
- The child can cut along a 15cm x 1cm wide straight line with 100% accuracy.
- The child can cut out a straight lined shape (square/triangle) drawn from 1cm thick lines with 80% accuracy.
- The child can cut out a circle drawn from 1cm thick lines with 50% accuracy.
Stage 3 – Getting creative
This stage is for children who have mastered basic lines and shapes, but are ready for more complex shapes and some creativity. The line thickness decreases and the variety of shapes increase. There are many cut and paste activities as well as basic origami folding activities.
- The child can cut out a straight lined shape (square/triangle) drawn from 0.5cm thick lines with 80% accuracy.
- The child can cut out a circle drawn from 0.5cm thick lines with 75% accuracy.
- The child can use their scissor skills independently to complete craft activities.
Stage 4 – More complex cuts
This stage is designed to further challenge children’s cutting skills. Zig zags and star shapes are included here as they are actually much more complex than they first appear. To take skills even further, there are activities which require the children to cut inside shapes as well.
- The child can cut out shapes with multiple direction lines drawn from 0.2cm thick lines with 80% accuracy.
- The child can cut out zig zag and star shapes drawn from 0.5 cm thick lines with 75% accuracy, keeping their scissors in continual motion (i.e. they continually turn and reposition their paper, rather than making a series of single cuts to each corner).
- The child understands how to make cuts inside a shape (e.g. eyes on a mask) and makes a reasonable attempt at the shape.
 Accuracy = the percentage of cutting which stays within the boundaries of the line