Learning to tie one's own shoes is such a milestone. And tying in its own right is such a useful skill, isn't it? It liberates one from a tassle loafers lifestyle, enables one to wrap a present with ribbon, give the ability to tie someone else's shoelaces together... it pretty much opens up whole new worlds of foot-fashion, gift-decoration and practical joking.
My son has been resisting the acquisition of this skill. It has not been entirely clear why. Perhaps it is his perfectionist nature? If he can't just do it perfectly right away, no reason to try. Or maybe sheer laziness? Why learn to tie when you can just velcro? It has been frustrating as his mother...as his parents.
Today, I announced that this would be the day. Shoe-tying Lesson Day. And that I'd be dadblamed if this skill were not acquired by Monday morning. This was, of course, met with histrionics... screaming and whining so shrill and unnerving that I was surprised my eardrums didn't burst and blood didn't start dripping down my neck. After attempting to reason with this freaked out mess of a child for way longer than I should have, I did the Bad Mommy thing... I yelled "Shut. UP." And he did :)
I sat his sniveling, snuffling, still-semi-whining behind down next to me with this awesome education tool:
We have had this book for years. If you click on the image and biggify it, you will see the suggested age range on the lower right, near the corner... "ages 4-7". I got it when he was within that age range... SIX YEARS AGO!!!
There was a lot going on in our lives back then when I bought that book... daddy traveling frequently, a new baby in the house, a difficult kindergarten situation... and that "a lot" morphed into "a ton" within two years. The whole teach-the-kid-to-tie-his-shoes thing just sort of went by the wayside :( I accept full responsibility. And he didn't have any shoe-tying interest of his own... he was more concerned with his self-imposed reading goal of 100 pages a day.
Today, I shouldered that responsibility, and he put his book down.
Today, my 11-year old son learned to tie his own shoes :)