Children have different learning abilities and they should never be compared. Some kids are so adventurous and bossy that they would insist on putting on kids suit or shoes themselves even if they take a long time and mostly not even do it right. Some of them love to be independent and in charge of doing things themselves. Teaching your child to dress early will not only save you time but it has a huge benefit on their mental development.
At the initial stage, you should start teaching a child how to dress themselves during the evenings or when you are not in a hurry to go out of the house. A child will take a longer time in a simple task as putting a leg in a trouser. It should be a gradual and progressive step so that it will lead to a smooth transitional improvement. Shower your child with praise when they perform well and also encourage them to do better.
1. Get them to participate; when you’re dressing your kids, you should get them involved in the dressing process. You can do this by allowing them to lift their leg to put in a leg hole, stretch out a hand over a sleeve, pull up trousers at the waist and reach out afoot for socks. It is very important to note that patience is required. And do not be tempted to offer assistance. Let them try at their own pace.
2. Kick start their dressing adventure with elastic pants; kids learn quickly when it is fun. By giving them elastic pants with elastic fasteners, they will view it as having playtime. The fasteners are a good step to introduce them to the skill of getting dressed.
The elastic buttons are very easy to pull off. It is only when they have mastered this process that you would introduce them to the next step of fastening buttons like zippers and snaps. The standard button should be the last on the list.
3. Guide your child to sit down when dressing; a child needs a balance when getting dressed. To avoid the struggle for balance and fall, a child should always be guided to sit when dressing. A level surface like the floor should be preferred to elevated surfaces like a chair or the bed. This way, a child gets to focus on one thing alone, to get his clothes on. It is only when they have their feet tucked into the trousers that they would stand on their feet.
4. Get them to be able to tell the difference between front and back; I’ve seen kids mistook front for back. Do not forget that they are kids and what might seem obvious to you might not be so to them. Give them clothes with clear defined front clues. Most children’s clothes have pictures in the front. Since not all of them do, you can teach them to identify the back of clothes with the position of the tag/label. But not all clothes have their tag positioned at the back. Some are right in the front and or sides.
5. Easy to slip-on shoes; teaching your kids how to dress in shoes should begin with shoes that are easy to slip-on. They should be able to identify which part of the leg goes in first and which one stays out. It’s obvious I know but not to the kids. For sneakers, you should begin with those without shoelaces. But you should settle for those that come with velcro.
Identifying the right foot from the left seems to be a challenge to them too. You should be creative and create memories that will serve as a reminder to them. Giving them the chance to try it, unaided helps to boost their confidence. Good shoes also help children to stand out, for instance when they attend a birthday party.