How to Teach Kids to Dress Themselves?

Teaching your kids to dress themselves makes them confident and independent. In addition, once how to get dressed, one task is subtracted from your parenting chores. Watching them grow happy and healthy is too satisfying when your kids achieve a milestone. Getting dressed is the easiest task but teaching your kids’ dressing skills may be hard. Most new parents get frustrated when comparing their kid with their friend’s kids, who started getting dressed early. Although each child has different learning abilities, your kids can get dressed if you train them early.

So, all the parents, if you want to know how to teach your kids to dress themselves, this post is for you. Read it till the end and learn how to teach dressing skills to your child.

What Age Should a Child Be Able to Dress Himself?

boy wearing jacket

One of the most asked queries from parents is, “What age should a child be able to dress himself?” The short answer is, typically, a child can dress himself at 4 to 5 years of age. All kids learn and achieve developmental milestones differently. Some are fast learners; they pick things quickly, while others take time.

Similarly, learning to get dressed is a step-wise process and, kids take time to understand these skills. Each step requires an appropriate age to master that skill. If a child has developmental delays, he may need therapy to groom his fine motor, gross motor, language and, cognitive skills.

Can 5-Year-Olds Dress Themselves?

Yes, 5-year-olds can dress themselves if they have no developmental delays. Kids gradually learn how to get dressed as they grow. A one-year-old child can up his arms to wear sleeves and feet to wear shoes. He can also pull off socks and shoes. Moreover, he can pass his arms through sleeves and legs through pants.

A two-year-old child can find armholes in a shirt and remove his coat or jacket. In addition, he can also push down his pants. A 2-3year-old child can wear elastic pants, socks with help, shoes on the wrong feet and, a shirt without buttoning.

A 4-year-old child can dress up with little help, while a 5-year-old can wear clothes without supervision.

How To Teach Dressing Skills to Your Child? Step-By-Step

girl winter clothes

Here are steps to teach dressing skills to your child. Have a look:

Name the clothes: Firstly, you should teach your toddler to recognize clothes by a simple name. For example, put on a shirt and repeat its name. Also, use simple language such as put on, pull up, and put off for young kids. Avoid giving complicated instructions like putting sleeves in armholes unless your child understands these commands.

Teach Undressing first: Undressing is easy and enhances your child’s confidence. So, teach undressing first and encourage him to put the worn dress in the laundry basket.

Practice with easy-to-wear Clothes: Keep easy-to-wear outfits on hand when you think your child is old enough to practice dressing skills. For example, pants with elastic waist, t-shirts, underwear, socks, shirts with large buttonholes, clothes with clear front and back cues, zipped jackets. Kids love the activity of unzipping a jacket.

Give simple verbal commands: Use simple and easy language for teaching your kids to get dressed. Break down each step into small steps. For example, you could teach them step-wise to wear a t-shirt using these verbal commands.

  • Keep the deep neck side on the front.
  • Pass your head through the neck hole.
  • Push one arm through one sleeve at a time.

Take care of these points:

  • While teaching your kids to get dressed, take care of these points.
  • Don’t practice in rush hours, such as the morning or going out.
  • Be patient and give a reasonable time while he’s getting dressed.
  • Keep praising even your child has done it wrong.
  • Allow your kids to choose a weather-appropriate dress to wear.
  • Store the clothes in cabinets where these are easily accessible to kids.
  • Make sure to allow your kids to stand where they feel comfortable while dressing. Some kids can balance their bodies while standing on the floor.

How To Teach Dressing Skills to Autistic Children?

Kids with Autism Spectrum Disorder may have sensitive skin. They can’t tolerate the texture of some clothes. Some of them can’t like to dress and throw extreme tantrums whenever you try to get them dressed.

An occupational therapist can help to teach dressing skills to your autistic child. All the kids on the spectrum have different symptoms. Therefore, each autistic child requires individual therapy.

Final Thoughts

girls winter dress

By following the mentioned steps, you can easily teach kids to dress themselves. However, each child is different. Some kids have no developmental issues, but they don’t pay attention to dressing skills. Don’t worry if your child is one of them; he’ll master dressing skills once he grows up.

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