Until I started this parenting journey, I had no idea about midline crossing. I’d heard about it occasionally in other contexts, but I didn’t really understand what it was or why it mattered. I remember talking about it with my mom what feels like forever ago, when Harley first started at TopTots, and even though she has a degree in early childhood education, she was also pretty in the dark about it all. It’s relatively new research, so your parents, in-laws or even teachers might not be aware of it, but ask any occupational therapist about it, and they will rave about how important it is. So, here’s a bit about the whole midline business, and why it’s such a big deal, as well as some ways that I’m encouraging Harley to do it as much as possible.
First up, the what. The main one people talk about is crossing your left-right midline. Imagine a line drawn down the center of your body, dividing your left and right sides. Other midline crossing that is often encouraged is the front to back line, as well as the top to bottom line. For the first, imagine lying down and being sliced in half as if you were making a sandwich, while with the second imagine the typical way that a magician would pretend to slice an assistant in half. Okay, so now you know where the lines are, but why do they matter?