On the job as a substitute teacher’s aide, if there’s day I get by without a student asking me to tie their shoes, it’s a rare day. If the kids knew how long it took me to learn to tie my own shoes back in the day, they might not want me to tie ’em.
I was watching a student the other day practice tying his shoes and it was a monumental task for him. His struggle brought back memories of my own a mere five decades ago. My Mom probably remembers my battle with shoe laces more than I do. I eventually learned but I never catered to shoes laces. It’s obvious from my shoe closet that I still prefer shoes with no strings attached.
This prompted me to do a Google search to see if there was a connection between autism and learning to tie shoes. The search confirmed there is a connection. There are even special shoe laces made just for those on the autism spectrum.
I once was with a kindergarten instructor who was holding a “tying-shoe” exercise with some of her kinders. She asked me to help. ME? The one who wears velcro-strapped shoes just to avoid having shoes to tie.
I didn’t want to admit that my teaching a child to tie their shoes was like a monkey teaching a bird to fly. HA! Granted I have been tying my own shoes for decades, but doing it and teaching someone else to do it are two different things. I tie without thinking about it.
I got on my knees beside the students and helped them the best I could. I’ll just say I had a much easier time that day helping the kinders with their jumping jacks than I did of showing them how to tie their shoes.