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When should children be able to dress themselves?

(49 Posts)
Mrsknackered Fri 24-Feb-17 18:21:42

I don't know if I am being too tough on him or not. He's 4 years old (turned 4 early Jan) and every morning, every night time we have the same battle.
He is so able to do most things. For example, getting his toothbrush, using the toothpaste.
Also if DP asks him to get dressed he takes quite a while but he does it, for me he doesn't at all. He cries a lot and I cave in and do it for him.
I've shown him countless times.
He is only able to put on socks.
What age should they be able to do this?

Lukeandlorelai4Ever Fri 24-Feb-17 18:24:04

My dd has just turned 4 too, she is well able to dress/undress herself (except tights) but I generally dress her to save the arguments!

Semaphorically Fri 24-Feb-17 18:24:14

DD can dress herself after a fashion (she needs some help) and she's 3. I don't know where she fits in the range of "normal" though?

PicnicPie Fri 24-Feb-17 18:27:04

DD4 can dress herself when suits, I. E. Dressing up, change of clothes. When it's stuff I want her to wear for the day and she doesn't like it then she will put on that she can't do it herself.

boatdancer Fri 24-Feb-17 18:27:31

My 3.5 year old will give a half arses attempt then complain until it's done for it. Left to herself she'll have her head out an arm hole and or both legs in one side of the trousers.

GieryFas Fri 24-Feb-17 18:28:13

Between 2 and 3 for most things - but some awkward pieces of clothing maybe 4yo. Definitely before they go to school - though teachers expect a bit of needing help with zips etc

Solasum Fri 24-Feb-17 18:28:16

My 3.2 year old can undress himself, but while at nursery he puts on shoes and coat himself, at home we always seem to be rushing, so I dress him to make sure we are on time blush. He can put pants and trousers on if forced though. As apparently my mum dressed me at home until I was about 6, I am aware I need to do something about this asap. I guess we need to start getting up earlier.

BreatheDeep Fri 24-Feb-17 18:28:48

DS can put pants and trousers on. He can just about put t-shirts on with a little help. Can't really do socks but can put shoes on. However he doesn't actually do any of it and makes me do it for him. He's 3.

Coconut0il Fri 24-Feb-17 18:29:39

DS1 could get changed for PE when he was in reception but he seemed to lose the ability when he was at home grin At 4 he could do trousers and tops but still struggled a bit with socks. He couldn't do buttons or zips but I know others in his class could.

Mrsemcgregor Fri 24-Feb-17 18:30:43

My 4yo can, but if I want things the right way round and not inside out I do it for him!

Dallyw Fri 24-Feb-17 18:30:58

It depends on the child some are very independent, some struggle. As long as they can get changed into their pe kit at school? Even then my sons reception class after pe come out of school with t shirts inside out and shoes on the wrong feet

Ericaequites Fri 24-Feb-17 18:38:32

Having chikdren change for PE before the age of 6 sounds like a recipe for chaos. Children can't look after their own things, clothes get lost, and it takes nearly as long as the lesson to dress and undress them.

weeblueberry Fri 24-Feb-17 18:41:04

DD does her own and has done for about six months? She's four in May. She often makes such a big palvar out of it though that it's easier to do some things (buttons, awkward zips etc).

DorotheaHomeAlone Fri 24-Feb-17 18:43:46

Dd can do everything but shoes, zips, and buttons. She needs help getting tight tips or dresses over her head. She's 2.5. I don't really believe that a NT 4yo can't do it. Definitely a case of won't.

SleepFreeZone Fri 24-Feb-17 18:48:11

DS turned 4 in November and he can get undressed fine. He can put his lower half clothes on fine but would struggle with his tops and jumpers I think. He is used to putting his shoes and coat on and off as they do that at preschool.

PurpleMinionMummy Fri 24-Feb-17 18:48:16

Around 3-4 ime. It's not an issue if he gets dressed for your dp though?

Soubriquet Fri 24-Feb-17 18:48:37

My Dd is 3 (4 at the end of next month) and she's been totally dressing herself for around a month now.

Before hand it was helping with things like trousers but she's got the hang of it all now

She hates being dressed by me now and wants to do it all herself

KindergartenKop Fri 24-Feb-17 18:50:30

I would say they need to be able to do it for school.
You say he will do it for his dad, but you just cave. Maybe try not caving? Make an exciting sticker chart? Race him to dress in the morning?

museumum Fri 24-Feb-17 18:50:33

My 3.5 can't manage tshirts or jumpers. TBH I do it for him because I'm lazy but I suppose I will crack down at some point. I find he's able to do stuff if I'm not there that he claims he can't if I am.

HostaFireAndIce Fri 24-Feb-17 18:51:04

My DS (4) can dress himself perfectly well (sometimes needs help zipping up his coat), but that doesn't always mean he is willing to do it. If your DS does it for your DP, then he can do it, so I wouldn't worry about that. I think at this age though, they still sometimes like to be awkward about doing what you want them to do. Probably you need to not give in and do it for him, but I appreciate that's sometimes easier said than done!

Crunchymum Fri 24-Feb-17 18:52:14

My 4.2yo is a dawdler. I dress him in the morning!! We'd need to get up at 6am otherwise (take ages to eat as well. Def isn't one for food first thing!!)

My 2yo is fab at dressing herself though. In fact she has been able to manage everything except tight's for a few months now.

JellyWitch Fri 24-Feb-17 18:53:51

Mine from 2 - 2.5. That said, the 7 year old doesn't object to help after swimming!

Joinourclub Fri 24-Feb-17 18:54:10

My 3.5 year old seems to manage more at nursery than at home! He's ok with vests and t shirts and oants, but less good with trousers and socks and I have to do those. He loves doing his zip up on his coat though!

Mistoffelees Fri 24-Feb-17 18:58:05

I'm a teacher and we do getting changed for PE in reception, it goes something like this- "Everyone take your shoes off and put them under your chair...No not jumpers yet we're going to do every bit at the same time...Now everyone take your socks off and put them in your shoes...No leave your trousers on for now, yes Jane I meant socks or tights...Now everyone take your jumpers or cardigans off and put them on your chair...Bob why are you naked?!...No don't start putting your uniform on, you might as well put your PE kit on now, what do you mean you haven't got it, why did you take all your clothes off then?" And repeat! It does mean they are experts by the end of the year though!

HappyAsASandboy Fri 24-Feb-17 19:05:00

He may well be able to dress himself (as he can for your husband), but want you to dress him because he wants to feel like a baby again, wants to feel looked after, wants to feel cared for.

Children are little for such a short time. Whenever mine want me to dress them I try to take it as a co plume to that they want close time with me and do it. They'll be grown up soon enough.

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