Clothing Choices and Care for Grade School Children Who are Blind or Low Vision

A topic often overlooked in grade-school years regarding successful transition is the increased independence of your child in managing their wardrobe. Using APH ConnectCenter’s appropriate attire lesson plan as a guide, give your child the knowledge, tools, and experience needed to choose appropriate clothing for a range of occasions and properly care for their clothing.

Help your child work toward independence in clothing and care by teaching these skills:

  • Learn to recognize properly fitting clothing.
  • Learn to choose clothing as formal or casual as appropriate for an occasion. Learn which fabrics indicate more or less formal clothing.
  • Learn to choose appropriate clothing for various circumstances. Wear bathing suits near water. In offices, employees wear longer skirts, dresses, formal slacks, collared shirts, and nice blouses. Wear worn clothing for play or yard work. Set guidelines for acceptable school clothing, etc
  • With your help, your grade-schooler can organize closets and drawers around matching clothing, keeping “play clothes” in a different space than more formal clothing. The goal of organization is for your child to choose clothes and get dressed independently.
  • Help your child label clothing by color or by matching styles, choosing a system that makes sense to her.

Taking Care of Clothing

It is important to help your child understand the process from start to finish. There are many steps to laundry and starting at a young age they can help put laundry in, push the button and be a part of it.

  • Learn to clean and iron clothing as needed and as suitable for the garment’s fabric.
  • With help, label washer and dryer settings.
  • Learn to recognize wrinkly, smelly, torn, or otherwise unpresentable clothing.
  • Learn to use a coin laundry.
  • Learn to use dry cleaning services.
  • Learn to mend a small hole in a fabric seam or take clothing to be altered.
  • Learn when to throw away tattered clothing and where to donate gently used, rarely worn pieces.
  • Drawing on the self-presentation lesson plan from CareerConnect, teach your child how and where to purchase clothing; recognizing styles, colors, and fits; and choosing a personal style. With your child’s approval, you can bring along a well-dressed peer to help choose current stylish clothing.

Additionally, teaching your child how to choose and care for clothing, help her recognize the significance of these choices. Clothing sends a message to others. What message does your child want to send?