The National Parenting Center

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Encouraging Self Dressing

You’ll want to encourage your child’s effort at self dressing, even though it will take a good deal more time at first and cause some frustration for you and your child. If you can’t help resisting, busy yourself elsewhere, close enough to give assistance, but leaving your child to handle it all alone.

• You can make button handling easier by sewing large buttons on your child’s clothes and easier yet by sewing them on with elastic thread.

• Teach your child to button from the bottom up; chances of coming out even are better.

• And also teach your child to pull a zipper away as well as up from clothes to avoid catching skin.

• Buy pants and skirts with elasticized waistbands to make them easy to pull on and off, but be sure that the elastic isn’t so tight that it makes imprints on the skin or rides up.

• Try to get clothing with monograms, appliqués, or special trim on the front to help the child tell the front from the back.

• And, teach your child to look for the label in the back of underpants. If there’s no label, you might want to indicate the front by sewing on a “belly button,” or drawing one with a marking pen.

Vicki Lansky’s practical, common sense approach to parenting is familiar to millions throughout the world. Vicki’s first book, Feed Me, I’m Yours, published in 1974, and still one of the most popular baby/toddler food cookbooks in the country, was followed by The Taming of the C.A.N.D.Y. Monster, a #1 New York Times bestseller. Her other titles include: Toilet Training, Birthday Parties Best Party Tips & Ideas For Ages 1-8, Dear Babysitter Handbook, Welcoming Your Second Baby, Getting Your Child to Sleep … and Back to Sleep, Trouble-free Travel with Children, Baby Proofing Basics and Games Babies Play From Birth to Twelve Months, Koko Bear’s New Potty, A New Baby at Koko Bear’s House, Koko Bear and the New Babysitter, and Koko Bear’s Big Earache. Vicki Lansky’s Divorce Book for Parents: Helping Children Cope with Divorce and Its Aftermath

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