Learning to dress independently is an important life skill. It gives your child a sense of achievement to master a new skill.
First your child will be able to help you as you dress them. They will hold out a foot for you to put a sock on and push their arms through their sleeves. Next they will learn to undress. They will be able to take off socks, pyjamas and anything without fastenings.
Then they will learn to put on clothing without fastenings. Then they will be able to take off and put on their clothes with some help with fastenings. Finally they will manage fastenings by themselves.
All children need to learn what order to put their clothes on in. They need to know that their pants go on before their trousers. Unless they want to dress up as a superhero! Find more information about teaching the order of dressing in the information sheet. You can also download some visual aids for the morning routine.
Babies love to take their socks off. They can usually manage this by themselves by the time they are 15 months old.
Putting on socks is a skill that children can often find challenging. It is particularly hard for children who have difficulties using both hands together.
Children learn to take their shoes off first. They can usually pull on wellies, slippers and slip-on shoes by the time they are 2 years old.
Buttons are a hard skill to learn. Both hands need to work together but make different movements.
Below are step by step videos with instructions on how to undo and do up buttons.
Learning to tie shoelaces is hard. Learning to tie laces before you need to wear shoes that need to be tied is a good idea. Children don't usually have the skills they need to be able to tie their shoelaces until they are between five and seven.
Tips for young people:
Tips for adults:
This video shows the One Loop Method.
This new method is another way to tie your shoelaces. This method is good for right and left-handed people.
This video shows you how to stop the laces from becoming too loose when starting to tie a shoelace. It involves wrapping the lace around twice instead of once.
This video shows you how to stop the shoelace knot from falling out. It involves knotting the two loops at the end.
As you move through school you might need to wear a school tie. You might just need a tie in school photographs or special occasions when you are at Primary School. Lots of secondary schools have a tie as part of the uniform and you might need to wear a school tie every day. It helps to be able to tie a tie by yourself so that changing for P.E. is not an issue.
Use the videos below to learn how to tie your tie.
Last reviewed July 2021.