Wednesday, April 20, 2016


Janet Cantrell is my guest blogger today.  She is a kindergarten teacher after my own heart!  You're going to love her idea for "Home Skills" and encouraging children to learn how to tie shoes!

Teaching kindergarten age children responsibility is one of the first lessons of school.
To encourage responsibility for self needs, I start off the year letting them know that I do not tie their shoes. (I know it’s harsh and I do tie in an emergency.) They need to learn! The more I do for them they will not take the effort to learn for themselves. It is part of growing up.

During our Parent Orientation meeting before school begins we remind our families about "Home Skills" kindergarten which includes tying and zipping, learning their address and phone number, etc.

I keep a bag of “fancy” shoelaces on my rocking chair and occasionally after recess we will take a few minutes to practice tying with a partner who is a Tying Teacher. 

If the child wraps the lace around his/her thigh, they can see and work it easily rather than being all squished up tying on their shoe.

To become a Tying Teacher, they must prove they can tie ‘one loop, around and through.
The “two bunny ears method’ is a good start when you’re four before coming to school, but now it is important to learn the grown up way. It is interesting to find out that some adults only know the two loop method.
When someone needs their shoes tied, a tying teacher can teach them not just tie them.

I send this note to families to practice at home.
CHILDREN need to learn how to tie their own shoes. This is considered a HOME SKILL. Learn it at home!
*A parent shared this little rhyme the she made up as she taught her children to tie.  It could help!  Try it.

Practice Tying
Criss cross (make X and go under)
Pull them tight
Make a loop to look just right (make loop near shoe end)
Over the loop (go around the loop)
Under your thumb (push through in thumb space)
Pull it tight and there it's done! (take hold of loop ends)
PRACTICE and LEARN how to tie! You can be a TYING TEACHER!

2 loop tying is the first effort many children learn. NOW advance to ‘around and through’ to be a Tying Teacher.

When the children are successful at tying they also receive a Tying Teacher certificate.


*Janet's email is if you'd like to contact her.

What's Your Number?
Yes, it's important for children to know their phone number (home or cell) in case of an emergency. It's easy to learn phone numbers to the tune of "Michael Row Your Boat Ashore." Give it a try!