During the first week of school we are not usually hit with bad weather requiring kindergartners to wear coats and jackets. Normally by the time the weather changes in the fall and outer clothing is required, for the most part the children know how to dress themselves. However, this week it rained all week where I teach and it was quite a show watching the children struggle to put on their own coats. When asked who puts on their coat at home, the answer was most always, “Mom” or “Dad”. Moms and Dads of the world if you are putting on your 5 or 6 year old child’s jacket for him/her and he/she is in Kindergarten it is time to stop dressing your child! Kindergarten teachers do not have an extra minute in their day to stop and help your child, or anyone else’s child for that matter, to put on their coat. This falls into the category of self help skills and your child SHOULD be putting on coats and jackets on his/her own. Many problems arise in the quick way that children take off their coats making their sleeves turn inside out. When faced with the inverted sleeve dilemma when it is time to put on their coats, many children are not able to think through the problem and figure out what to do. Many won’t even ask the teacher for help, they will just stand there and hope that the teacher is able to be a mind reader and help them. Some even put on their coats completely upside down and then wonder why the zipper won’t work! Hmm! If it wasn’t so sad, it would be funny. HELP your child help themselves by practicing, practicing and then practicing some more how to put on and correctly take off their jacket until it becomes like second nature. Especially watch out for the sleeves and practice how to correct them when they are inside out. Your child will feel successful when he/she is able to put on his/her coat on his own at school and your child’s teacher will thank you that she has one less child struggling with their coat.