Lady Bug enjoys dresses. If you dress her in a skirt and call it a skirt, she will “correct” you and tell you, “Dress!” The big poofy ones with tulle; she loves those. Two years ago dressing her was the focus of her Early Intervention time. She used to just let me dress her; not fighting, but not helping. Totally checked out and in her own world. Now she ducks her head when needed, pushes her arms through sleeves, and even sometimes finds the arm holes. She has a pair of shoes that she loves enough to ask me to put them on her (so of course I’ve purchased them in multiple sizes.)
Last week, after I’d let her run around naked/just diaper she came to me and said, “Okay, dress. I need dress!” I took her to her closet and asked her to choose and she grabbed for the fancy yellow dress saying, “Dress! Dress!” That day I ordered an extending rod for her closet in the hopes that having them at her level would encourage her to get more involved in picking out her clothes.
This week I added labels to her Montessori inspired closet shelves. (See picture) Lady Bug loves Signing Time. We own most of the dvds, and she’s watched them so many times that she recognizes the sign/word from a paused screenshot of the show. So playing the dvd on my computer I captured the signs for skirt, dress, shirt, pants, and shorts, as well as choose and clothes. I printed them out and laminated them before taping them to her shelves. The idea is for her to associate the sign and spoken word she knows with the actual items in her life. The written word is also in the screenshot, so maybe she’ll learn to read the words someday, too. I put “choose” and “clothes” on the door to encourage using the words she knows.
Of course, do these things ever work out the way we think they will? The day I put the screenshot labels on her shelves, I found Lady Bug in her closet with all the cards off the shelves visually stimming with them! And again the next day after I put them back. So I’m making her copies of the ones on the shelves, only larger,in the hope that she’ll play with those and leave the ones on the shelves alone.