When I first started in ECSE my fine motor center was mostly arts and crafts. As my students needs have changed so has the 'art center'. Now it is more of a fine motor center. It is more about pre-writing skills, pre-cutting skills, increasing their core strength, and all about fine motor practice.
This center is a daily center. While at the center the students is led by my aid. The center consists of 3-4 students.
The importance of this center is to prepare students for writing and cutting.
It teaches students how to follow directions. I do this through visuals that show what to do step by step. You can find these visuals here.
easel (helps increase the core so students hold the writing utensil correctly)
chalkboards (also in a vertical position)
There is probably a ton of other items we use that I totally forgot about! Is there anything you cannot live without in your art center area?
The teacher's role is to help students grasp the items correctly and to guide them, but to let the student's create without making it identical to the model or the exact same. Encourage creativity and how to make an idea come to life.