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Toddlers love the feeling of doing things for themselves. Be patient with you're tamariki when they're going through this phase and remember practise makes perfect.

Why do it?

  • Toddlers are interested in doing things for themselves.
  • They have been watching their parents and copying what they do.
  • They’ve been practising hand-eye co-ordination skills.
  • It may take a bit longer for a toddler to do something rather than the parent doing it. However, having the patience to let them try will pay off in the long run as they grow in confidence and achieve goals independently. If they’re keen to do something, they’ll master the skills more readily.
  • Saying ‘Me do it!’ is a sign they are growing up.

How to do it

  • Encourage a young child to take some responsibility for getting dressed.

  • They can:

    • take off their socks and shoes

    • take off some of their clothes

    • make little choices about what to wear, such as ‘Blue t-shirt or red one?’

    • put on a hat

    • put their dirty clothes in the wash.

  • Offering choices within the limits can help a toddler feel more in charge, for example ‘Do you want a bath or a shower?’

  • Young children can help with simple tasks, for example unpacking some of the shopping, sorting clean washing, washing the car, scrubbing potatoes or rinsing lettuce

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