I Can Do It Myself!

Self-dressing is an important kindergarten readiness skill that supports children’s developing independence and fine motor skills. In preschool, your child should master how to independently put on their shirts, pants, socks, shoes, coats, hats, and gloves. They should also be able to work buttons, zippers, and buckles with a little help. By kindergarten, children should also be learning how to tie their own shoelaces. Support these skills with the following fun activities.

Age-appropriate Adaptations:

  • Two-year-olds—Use bath/bedtime routines as opportunities to practice self-dressing when you’re not as rushed as in the mornings.
  • Three-year-olds—Play dress up! Allow your child to put the costumes on and off on their own, even if they miss a few buttons.
  • Four-/Five-year-olds—Have your child ‘help’ folding the laundry. See if he can work the zippers and buttons on the clothes as he folds. Then, help him to put the clothes away. Knowing where to find his clothes helps build independence and confidence.

Skills Supported: self-dressing, gross motor skills (pulling on shirts, pants, and jackets), fine motor skills (manipulating zippers, snaps, buttons, buckles, and laces), responsibility, independence, confidence

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