It can be very frustrating if you have a toddler that just won’t get dressed. You probably spend time getting his clothes ready and telling your little one to get dressed every morning. However, you might find that your toddler just won’t listen. Here are nine easy tips to try to help your toddler get dressed. These tips will help make the morning routine go a bit easier!
Give Several Choices
If you have been spending time choosing your toddler’s clothes for him, this might be part of the problem. A better approach is to give your toddler several choices of shirts and several choices of pants each day. This allows your toddler to feel like he has some control over what he is wearing. Therefore, he may go ahead and get dressed without a fight. Keep in mind that too many choices can be overwhelming for a toddler, so don’t just open the closet and tell your child to choose. Put three shirts and three pairs of pants on the bed and tell your toddler to choose from those options.
Practice Makes Perfect
It is always a good idea to have your child practice putting on clothes. One way to do this is to let your child practice putting clothes on a favorite stuffed animal or doll. This gives the toddler practice with buttons and zippers. Your toddler may need help to get the shirts over the dolls’ heads or may need help getting the pants on the right way. This practice will mean your child has an easier time putting on his clothes. After your toddler gets good at dressing his stuffed animals and dolls, he can practice on himself.
Make It a Game
One fun strategy to try when your toddler doesn’t get dressed is to make it an exciting game. Tell your toddler that you are going to see if he can get dressed before a timer goes off. You simply set a timer for 5 minutes and tell your toddler to beat the clock. You can slowly decrease the amount of time as your toddler gets better at dressing himself. Many toddlers like to try to win the game and beat the clock, so they get dressed quickly. You can even play a game to see if your toddler can get dressed faster than you can. Toddlers love to beat their parents at games!
Make Smart Purchases
Think carefully before purchasing clothes for your toddler. You want to steer clear of any pants with difficult clasps or buttons. The clothes you purchase for your toddler should also be comfortable and soft. Many children do not like the feel of the rough or itchy fabric against their skin, so they will refuse to get dressed when you ask them to get ready for the day. Take the time to feel the inside of the clothes you purchase to make sure they aren’t rough to the touch.
Remove the Tags
Some toddlers hate the feeling of the tags in the backs of shirts against their skin. These can be itchy and scratch their backs. If this is the case, cut these tags out of all of the toddler’s shirts to remove this problem. Be sure to keep the tags in case you need the washing instructions or in case you need to know what size it is when you go to buy more clothing.
Take Your Toddler Shopping
It is always a good idea to take your toddler shopping with you. Toddlers have a mind of their own. You may find what you believe is a perfect outfit for your toddler just to find out that your toddler hates the color, the buttons, or the neckline. Toddlers are just figuring out what they like and dislike. Toddlers are just learning that they have some control over their lives. If your toddler hates an outfit for any reason, it probably isn’t worth the fight. A better idea is to find an outfit you and your toddler can agree on to make getting dressed less of a struggle.
Add a Special Touch
If your toddler just needs a little boost to get dressed each day, try to add a special touch to his outfit. For example, you can tell your little one that he can wear a hat or a pair of sunglasses if he dresses quickly today. Some toddlers may want to wear a bracelet or a scarf like mommy. Use these additional clothing items to encourage your child to get dressed.
Buy a Mirror
You may want to purchase a full-length mirror for your child’s room. Toddlers love to watch themselves in the mirror. You just might find that your little one likes to watch himself get dressed in the mornings. You could add a mirror on the back of your child’s closet door or the back of the bedroom door. Your toddler may even want to add a few stickers around the edges to make a plain mirror more decorative. Just remember to hang the mirror low enough for your child to be able to see his whole body in the mirror. This mirror can be moved higher as your child grows through the years.
A sticker chart is always a good idea. You can create a simple sticker chart to reward your toddler for getting dressed each day. After your child gets a certain amount of stickers, you can reward him with a prize. For example, if your toddler gets dressed five days in a row and earns five stickers on the sticker chart, he might get a special dessert after dinner or extra TV time for the week. It is important for your child to feel rewarded for the progress he makes as he learns to follow your directions and get dressed. All toddlers need to learn this important responsibility at a young age, and these tips will make the morning routine easier for everyone in the house!