Are you finding teaching your child how to dress a challenge? With each of my children, it took me several different techniques that made it easier with each child, and I want to share a few tips that may help you.
1. Have Reasonable Expectations. Starting between the ages of 18 months - 2 years old, children can put on slip-on shoes. By the age of 3, the're able to put loose-fitting clothing on by themselves. By 4 or 5, they’re usually able to dress themselves.
2. Let Your Child Choose His Style. Each morning, I would put out 2 or 3 outfits for my toddler to choose from. This not only makes learning to dress a little more fun, it helps them learn how to make decisions. You can even start this before you teach them how to dress themselves. Sometimes you’ll run into a problem where your child will want to wear the same thing every day. My daughter went through this with a pink ruffled dress when she was three and wanted me to wash it every night so she could wear it the next day. Try to find a few outfits that your child likes and are comfortable.
3. Keep It Simple. At first, you may want to put your child’s clothing on halfway and allow him to finish. Purchase clothing that is loose and easy to put on. Try clothes that is one size larger. Start out with pullover shirts, loose-fitting pants and simple dresses. Slip-on shoes and shoes with velcro straps work well. Avoid clothing with buttons, zippers, and snaps.
4. Start Earlier in the Morning. While your child is learning, try to get up a little earlier to give both of you extra time and you won’t feel rushed. Unless your child becomes frustrated, give him the time to figure out how to put something on. Giving yourself more time in the morning will prevent you from doing something for him because you’re feeling a time constraint.
5. Create a Visual Reference.On poster board, create columns with each item of clothing your child has to put on and the order of importance of each item.
6. Clothing with Zippers and Buttons. When your child has mastered the basic clothing, you may want to move onto clothing with zippers and buttons. Let your child practice using dolls and teddy bears, busy books and clothing boards.
Do you have any tips to help your child learn how to dress themselves?
Hello, I’m Kelly, a regular contributor on this blog. I live in Pennsylvania with my loving husband and our five beautiful children. I have a background in early childhood education, but I am currently homeschooling my kids. From pregnancy to postpartum to toddler life, I love sharing advice with other moms who are having a challenging time with this crazy but wonderful role of motherhood.
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