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How to dress the right way round

Why it’s important

Teaching your child to put their clothes on the right way round is an important life skill. Ensuring your child can do this confidently will help them through school and give them a sense of independence. It can also save you some time.

How to help your child dress the right way round

Use clothes with an identifiable feature

This could be an image or logo on the front, or a top or different coloured lining of the inside of a coat.

Mark the back of the garments on the inside

Use a fabric pen and mark the garment with a ‘B’ for back or your child’s name.  You could also sew a different coloured piece of thread into the back of the garment or use a name tag. Encourage your child to find the mark and identify where it goes.

Lay lower garments on a flat surface

For example, with the waist band facing upwards towards your child. Then ask your child to grasp the waist band and put their legs in.

Lay upper garments with the front side facing down

Do this on a flat surface such as a bed or table. With the larger opening facing your child, ask them to put one arm at a time into each sleeve so they can see which way round the garment goes.

What to do if your child makes a mistake

Help them identify where they went wrong by:

  • allowing them to complete the entire task – ask if they can feel/identify what does not feel right
  • asking them questions to direct them to where they have gone wrong
  • asking them to identify where they went wrong by looking in a mirror
  • practicing with items they can easily identify the front or back, for example large images, logos or patterns.

Allowing your child to work out where they went wrong can improve their learning. They’ll be more likely to remember it for next time.

You can also try the backward chaining method.