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How do I teach DS to do up buttons, zips etc

(12 Posts)
bozzy Wed 11-Jul-07 18:10:50

At what age should a boy dress themselves? My DS is 4 in August, and although he can put on pants, t-shirt and shorts, he doesn't know about buttons, zips etc so I have to go to toilet with him to help (also shoes - can take off but not put on). Any advice on when they should be able to do this and how I can teach him?

lilolilmanchester Wed 11-Jul-07 19:57:09

I'd say he should be doing zips and shoes by now. And starting on buttons (especially if he is going to school in September and has button-up shirts as part of his uniform; if not, start with zips and shoes).
Zip:start him off practising on a pair of his trouser but when he's not wearing them, so he gets the hang of pulling it up and down. Then try it when he's wearing them. Teach him right from the beginning to ensure his willy is tucked safely away in his under pants! Also, with shoes, I think you probably just have to let him practise when you're not in a hurry to go anywhere. Again with buttons, get him used to doing up buttons on something he's not wearing. Maybe put a little shirt on a big teddy or something. Just always make sure you're in the mood for it as I used to find it hugely frustrating to watch and not help! Long time ago for me, but hoepfully others might have some different ideas for you too

LIZS Wed 11-Jul-07 19:57:47

dd only learnt to do her coat zip this winter - she's 5 - but could do most buttons the year before(ie big chunky ones on her summer dress). Is he starting school soon , if so focus on him managing his uniform, you can get pull on school trousers/shorts to avoid a button/zip fastening. What sort of shoes have you tried, velcro fastening are most straightforward.

bozzy Wed 11-Jul-07 21:03:20

Thanks - great advice - he did surprise me how quickly he picked up getting dressed - the problem I am away from my friends since we moved - so used to being able to compare with his friends so I feel a bit out of touch .. so used to doing so much for him as it is quicker - we are on summer break now so no excuses!!!

HonoriaGlossop Wed 11-Jul-07 22:04:08

If he doesn't want to do it then I wouldn't force the issue too much. It could make him anxious about school. Obviously if he will be shown, and wants to learn, great - but for instance, my ds was just a mixture of uninterested/angry/anxious about anything to do with independence skills and getting ready for school! As you can imagine it was not easy to get him practising this stuff.

Don't feel that he 'should' be doing this or that. They all get it eventually. Seeing his peers do stuff will have a major effect, if he's anything like my ds. Obviously it's easier for the teacher if they're all independent when they start, but don't get fooled into thinking they all are; they're not.

bozzy Wed 11-Jul-07 22:34:43

Thank youfor your posting HG, my DS is not exactly enthusiastic and you are right , I shouldn't force it on him relating to school - maybe dressing his teddy bear in his shirt and shorts may be an interesting experiment...!

lilolilmanchester Wed 11-Jul-07 22:50:46

Totally agree with not relating it to school in his mind, and agree you shouldn't force it if he's not interested. But if you could do a little each day and see how it goes, he might feel a bigger boy when he goes to school and can do some of those things (as he'll be one of the youngest in the class).

HonoriaGlossop Wed 11-Jul-07 23:00:54

yes, just noticed he's not even four yet - poor boy! just like my ds who started school at JUST four - August birthday.

It's tooooooooo young!

bozzy Wed 11-Jul-07 23:04:29

Yes, well we have actually decided to get permission to hold him back a year... we moved to Gibraltar/Spain a year ago and we are convinced that he would benefit from another year...

Hathor Wed 11-Jul-07 23:09:16

Trousers don't have to have zips do they? School trousers usually have elasticated waists at the back, so can be pulled down for the toilet. Shoes and trainers are velcro so perhaps not too hard to learn to do up?
Shirts - can he wear polo shirts to school? - only 2 buttons and would not be disaster if not buttoned up after PE.
Lots of the others will need some help dressing/changing - they should have a classroom assistant to help.
Bottom wiping probably one to master before school though.

bozzy Wed 11-Jul-07 23:43:35

good point about bottom wiping!!

herbiemom Thu 12-Jul-07 11:53:05

Eeww - we are currently teaching our just-turned-4 year old to wipe his bottom as he starts school in September. Bless him - he's trying but just seems to smear poo all over his arse (sorry TMI).

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