12 August 2008

How to teach your child to tie shoes? Talk amongst yourselves.

In: 6+ Years

From Susan:

I need to teach my son how to tie his shoes. Does anyone know of any good shoe-tying lessons/hacks?

We've talked about shoe-tying before, but the topic is worth revisiting as school approaches. I found these step-by-step instructions at Wondertime, but I'm sure you've got some clever hacks as well. What are your best tips?

More than you ever wanted to know about how to tie shoes
Curly no-tie shoelaces for toddlers' sneakers

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I did the bunny ears method with my daughter as she has a hard time learning (as I did). This method involves making two bunny ears (loops) and pushing one into the bunny hole then pulling it out. 3 years later, she's a pro

I'm looking forward to the responses, this is a timely hack for me with my son starting Kindergarten and needing new shoes, preferably ones that are not Vel-cro, which I hate but have given in to due to convenience.

The easiest thing is to use two differently coloured laces.

Also, of course there's toys like these http://i6.ebayimg.com/06/i/000/e2/fc/1947_1.JPG
or, you can try this http://www.fieggen.com/shoelace/ianknot.htm method.

I'd thought my son had the hand coordination much younger, but age 7 he decided he wanted to learn. Maybe it happens like potty training and happens quickly if they're ready.

I showed him several time, hand over hand, his foot and mine, and then gave him a shoe to practice on. A week of practice and he ties independently with a double knot.

I was thinking when our time comes, I will just go with Velcro as long as I can, and let shoe-tying wait on greater manual dexterity when he gets older. I can't see stressing over it.

We're going with the springy elastic kind for my 3-year old. Less than $2 at WalMart.

Take a shoe box bottom that is bigger than your child's foot and punch 3-4 holes in each side. Then lace the box with a bootlace or adult-size shoelace. Your child can then put their foot into the box (with or without their shoes on) and practice, using the bigger laces. Cheaper than buying a specific toy and easy for them to practice.

Ian's Shoelace Site is full of awesome tips!

We used the book "Red Lace, Yellow Lace" by Mike Casey. It has a cute little rhyming story and a "shoe" with one red lace and one yellow lace. I found it a Barnes and Noble, but I'm sure you could locate it on ebay or amazon.

We used the different colored laces books, etc, and I finally realized that my son couldn't figure out where to grasp the laces. He was always trying to hold them at the very ends. So I placed three black dots on one lace and one on the other near the knot. He grabs the middle dot on the first lace and then connects the first and third dots with his other hand to form a loop. Then he grabs the other lace on its dot and wraps it around and through. He loved that solution and had it down in about two seconds.

I think the bunny ears method is easiest for kids to start with, then they can move to the more complicated standard bow later. But for us, velcro is still the way to go for a little bit longer, I think.

I forgot to mention that the opportunity to buy Shoelace Shoes is a bit like getting to buy Big Boy Underpants when success is achieved. Really, much like potty training!

I also liked using two different laces. We had one SpongeBob and one Spiderman....

These regular looking elastic laces stretch to allow your foot to just slip into, and out of the shoe. http://kids.morewrite.com/category/kid/toddler/

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