Shoe Tying

Shoe tying

The objective of shoe tying is for your child to be independently able to tie shoe laces.
A great way to teach shoe tying is by using the deconstruction method.

The steps for shoe tying are as follows:

1. Cross shoe laces
2. Loop through
3. Pull the knot
4. Make one loop
5. Go around the loop
6. Make another loop
7. Pull loops tight

Instructions for Lesson

1. Sit on the floor with your child.
2. Engage your child by saying your child’s name or touching your child’s arm.
3. Put a shoe with laces in front of your child and say “It’s time to ty the shoe”.
4. Show your child the first step of shoe tying.
5. Prompt your child through the motion.
6. Then say “Do this (repeat the motion)” and hand the shoe to your child.
7. Perfect outcome: your child repeats the motion. Praise!
8. Not so perfect outcome: your child holds the laces but doesn’t know what to do.

Be Persistent and Work with Child Until Mastered

Repeat “Do this (slow motion)” and prompt your child through the motion. Repeat the instruction. Your child does it. Praise! Your child still doesn’t know what to do: repeat the instruction again and prompt your child through the motion. Do that for 3 times and move on to a different task and come back to shoe tying later. Once your child repeats the motion, have your child do something completely different and then repeat steps 4-6.

By the time your child masters shoe tying you will just be able to put a shoe in front of your child and say “Tie shoe” and your child will be able to tie the shoe by him/herself. The process of learning to tie a shoe might take a couple months. It involves a lot of fine motor skill and is often hard for children with autism to learn. Don’t give up and be patient. If you feel like your child is not ready for shoe tying yet and you have tried for a while you can always stop and reintroduce the program at a later time.

Items you need

A shoe with laces

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Autism Support Now is a Parent advisory blog and media site presented by "Ella's Hope for Autism" a 501c3 public charity in Missouri. This site is built for parents dealing with Autism . . . by parents dealing with Autism. Hope and Sam McPheeters (founders of Ella's Hope) have two children on the spectrum, and strive to provide continued advice for other parents, who are dealing with the same issues..