Teaching Child to Tie Shoes

Updated on June 23, 2008
A.T. asks from Euless, TX
12 answers

Any advice on how to teach a child to tie his/her own shoes?

4 moms found this helpful

What can I do next?

  • Add your own comment
  • Ask your own question
  • Join the Mamapedia community
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

Featured Answers



answers from Dallas on

My way of teaching was:

1) Make a tree. (the first loop)

2) Rabbit runs around the tree, and . . .

3) Dives down the hole.

The preschool teacher that suggested "tie my thumb to the tree" - - I like that. That would fit with rabbit running around the tree.

Edit My Answer
1 mom found this helpful

More Answers



answers from Tyler on

I taught preschool for years. Every once in a while, I had a child ASK to learn to tie shoes, so I would sit down with this child and it would draw a crowd of kids who wanted to learn too.

I always started with one step at a time. This way you do not overwelm them with the entire task. When you break it down to a little one, it's a LOT to remember to do. I only taught one step each week and let the child practice it each time we put on the shoes. (Summer is a good time because for some reason shoes keep coming off and on all day.)

Step 1: "Criss-Cross, Criss jumps in the hole; then pull" (this is the base knot).

Step 2: "Make a loop, not too big."

Step 3: "Tie my thumb to the tree."

Step 4: "Now pull it free."

This last step will stump them until they realize which hole to pull it through, but once they do. WOW!

It's great to accomplish a new task on your own.

Good luck!

P. <><

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I got a shoe box lid and punched holes in it imitating a shoe. We took that shoe box lid everywhere for a few days, practicing tying the "shoe". Make a game of it, make two to 'race' etc. It worked great for my kids-teenages now.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Amarillo on

There is a book called "Red Lace Yellow Lace" or something like that. My daughter sat down with it one time and figured it out on her own. There is also some little saying or rhyme about a tree and a rabbit...My youngests daughter's friend was saying at school one time. You might do a search on that.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

I use the method that adam sandler used in the movie where he adopts a little boy (can't think of the name) but the method is "loop, swoop, and pull"

you can also make a practice table by getting a thick poster board and putting several rows of shoelaces on it and have him practice on the board...

A. J



answers from Dallas on

Dear A. T,

I think the most important thing is that the CHILD wants to learn to tie his or her own shoes. When the child is ready, he or she will be eager to learn. I taught my son to tie his shoes while he sat on my lap. We did it over and over again until he could do it correctly. One sitting (pun intended!) was all it took.

Deb D



answers from Dallas on

I purchased I Can Tie My Shoes lacing cards from TeachMart off N. Beach Street. It worked for my 6 year old. I'm working on my 5 year old now.



answers from Dallas on

I found if you use 2 different colored strings on the same shoe really works well. I taught about 15 children using this ildea. Work great!



answers from Dallas on

i used both strings as loops and had her wrap around. the bunny ears thing. it is a lot easier than one straight and one looped. also there is a book with a shoe on it that has a nice long string to practice with but you could easily use a shoe. but the bunny ears worked great.



answers from Dallas on

The best way I found is find an old shoe and color one lace black and leave the other white then they can see easier which one goes where....worked like a charm for me!!



answers from Dallas on

My first 3 kids, I taught the regular way - just repeat. My fourth child wanted to do it so bad. He could get the original knot, but the rest stumped him. One day he just started tying the two loops together and it works! I'd never seen anyone tie like that, but it's actually the same end result.



answers from Dallas on

I bought a wooden puzzle that had real laces. The real trick was to have his older brother teach him all the other tricks didn't work for my little one. It was hard too because my husband does the 2 loops and I do the one and wrap. Decide how you will tie first. Enlist another little person to show/teach.
Good Luck

Next question: Ryhme to Teach Shoe Tie