when did you.....

Discussion in 'The Toddler Years(1-3)' started by eagleswings216, Mar 15, 2014.

  1. eagleswings216

    eagleswings216 Well-Known Member

    I was wondering when you all started letting your kids do certain things.  I'm thinking about:
    -brushing teeth by themselves
    -washing themselves (right now I mostly do it still)
    -showering vs. a bath (my kids have expressed interest, but I don't know that they are old enough to manage a shower??)
    -learning to tie shoes - not sure when to start working on this?
    I want my kids to be as independent as possible, but I don't want to frustrate them and me by trying to teach them things that are way above their age range.  They turned 4 in December, and they can dress independently for the most part, but still struggle with socks, and DS2 can't do buttons yet.  They can both do zippers, velcro shoes, gloves, etc. when I can keep them motivated to do it!!
  2. miss_bossy18

    miss_bossy18 Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    My girls are 5.5. They started brushing their teeth themselves around 4. They just recently started washing themselves (although I still double check they've adequately rinsed). They have a strong preference for baths although they'll shower sometimes with me or DH, especially if we're pressed for time. We haven't bothered with shoe tying yet.

    My generall rule of thumb is to let them tell me when they're ready to try something new. I find when they're internally motivated they're much more persistent in working through the challenges.

    On the other hand, if I find myself becoming frustrated at performing certain tasks for them because I feel it's something they could do on their own, we have a family meeting about it and brainstorm solutions together.
  3. mama_dragon

    mama_dragon Well-Known Member

    It depends on how capable they are at the task.  My two have been cooking with me since they could stand at the sink/stove.  They were flipping pancakes before they turned 2. 
    They have been showering forever alone.  They started as soon as they could sit up alone since it was far easier for me to shower with them in the shower so I didn't have worry about what they were getting into.  In fact its tons easier.  I give them a squirt of soap and let them have at it.  If nothing else I know they are under the water long enough to wash away most of the dirt.  I'd allow them to get their own soap but they tend to decide they need loads of bubbles so I don't let them have the bottle yet.  They take bathes to play and showers to get clean. 
    For bushing teeth... I still brush them once a day at age 5.  They brush them twice a day but I get a turn when they brush at bedtime.  Probably started that around 4.  Their dentist wants me to brush them until 6 or 7.  Kids just do not brush well enough.  You might think they do but they don't.
    The boys do not have shoes that tie yet so this isn't an issue.
  4. kingeomer

    kingeomer Well-Known Member TS Moderator

    I started with tying shoes this year in kindergarten.  We still supervise baths, as my kids have no desire to take showers (I wish they would).  They will wash themselves and their hair (again that started around 4-5) Brushing teeth, they do themselves (I'd say that started around 4-5)  and when they are done, I go over it just in case if they missed a spot.
  5. eagleswings216

    eagleswings216 Well-Known Member

    Thanks, ladies.  I think I will work on letting them wash themselves before we try a shower, and maybe let them brush some.
  6. ECUBitzy

    ECUBitzy Well-Known Member

    We assist with nighttime brushing but the girls do it on their own in the mornings. They're responsible for putting on pjs and all that on their own at night.

    They don't bathe alone yet and I haven't done laced shoes yet (which is a reflection of my lazy parenting- our mornings are too chaotic without adding something they'd want to do on their own like that). They still prefer baths so I help them with it (but they rinse and then I just rerinse them to be sure they're actually clean).

    We also want the girls to be as independent as possible- I think it builds confidence. The school we're going to this fall emphasizes independence and I'm super excited about it!
  7. FGMH

    FGMH Well-Known Member

    With all these tasksour routine is for them to do it on their own, but for me or DH to be around to lend a hand and keep an eye on things if necessary. Being around means I might be folding laundry, doing ironing, sorting clothes for washing or getting myself dressed. So it's loose supervision.
    Mine are about 6 months older than yours and dress themselves except for buttons and the occasional stubborn zip. We have not bothered with tying laces yet.
    They brush their teeth on their own but we assist with bedtime brushing. Our dentist also told us that it is really important to check and brush ourselves at least once a day until they are at least 6 or 7.
    They shower themselves but I help with adjusting the water temperature (our shower is fiddly in that regard) and washing their hair, especially DD because her hair is long and shampooing and rinsing alone is difficult and she hates soap in her face. Showers are our routine solution for getting them clean even though they love baths, but those are more for play and relaxation these days.
    They also wash their faces and bottoms with a washcloth each morning and do that independently. If I notice they are irritated down there I will check and help them do it more thoroughly for a couple of days.  
  8. Lexieade

    Lexieade Active Member

    Mine have been brushing their own teeth since around 2, I just "help" them before they put their toothbrushes up. They love baths but I usually bring them in the shower with me. I wash their hair but since about 2 they have been washing their bodies. I brought them their own loofahs that they still get excited about using. I just make sure to occasionally attacking them with soap just in case. They just turned 3 so we aren't close to tying shoes yet though I did see them both tie balloons to a toy yesterday.
  9. w101ttd

    w101ttd Well-Known Member

    Mine have been brushing teeth around 2.5. Now they take baths themselves (wash their bodies, brush teeth, brush tongues, floss,..) we only wash their hair.

    They also, dress themselves (clothes, shoes, jackets,..). They can zip, button. My kids can tie shoes. But if they tie, it takes us like 10 mins to untie lol. So we don't let them tie shoes. I got them special laces. I don't wanna deal with it now

    My kids also do chores: do their beds, clean their bedroom, playroom, sweep and wipe living room, kitchen and office floods, take their dirty clothes to the laundry room. They actually do very good jobs. I don't have to redo any :).

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