Shoe Tying is overratted

crocs………… what can i say about crocs.  i love them.  they are the most comfortable shoes and flip flops that i own.  but my love for them also comes with a note of caution to parents.  crocs and sketchers are depriving our children of a basic skill that before the invention of velcro was essential by kindergarten (do i sound like one of those fundamentalists yet?).  yes i’m speaking of shoe tying.  dawson’s first grade teacher repeatedly sent home notes regarding his lack of ability to tie his shoes.  the second grade teacher also sent home a note.  it wasn’t that he couldn’t tie the shoes, but his underdeveloped looping skills caused his tie jobs to frequently come undone.  this really became a major issue in second grade.  so i did what any mom would do in this situation, i bought him laces that never needed tied.  they were like coiled bungee cords that kept his shoes on.  they were only moderately successfu in that they made the shoes really hard to put on.  so i bought sketchers.  the kind that have elastic across the tongue and don’t even have anything resembling laces.  then the sketchers took a “swim” in the creek and we were again faced with the dilema of buying new shoes.  we took a chance on laced ones.  at first there was a struggle with loops that were too big and knots when untying but he managed to go all summer and now fall with laced shoes.  however in a hurry the crocs were always a quick and easy way to get out the door. 

and then there is teagan.  all summer long teagan did not know that any other shoe besides her pink crocs even exsisted.  crocs are great for “time-challenged” parents (that is what i’m calling my lack of abilty to be on time anywhere).  if you need your kids to get their own shoes on they can readily slip on crocs without any assistance.  kids as young as 2 are easily able slide the crocs on.  every child at teagans pre school wears crocs.  why?  because at pre school they have to take their shoes off everyday to go out on the gymnastics floor.  so every other “time challenged” parent like myself has figured out that we could spend 5 min getting our kids shoes on and off at pick up and drop off times or we buy them crocs and the kids are self sufficient.  although teagan now has sketchers which she can put on herself…. again with the elastic/velcro combo in place of actual laces.  she is actually required to put on and take off her shoes by herself in occupational therapy.  but i assume that when she gets to first grade i will recieve a note of concern that she is unable to tie her shoes.  and we will again go through the annoying spongebob song about how to tie your shoes (“you go over and back, left to right, loop de loop, and you pull ’em tight”).  i guess my greatest concern is…… what if crocs and sketchers go out of business.  its highly unlikely based on their skyrocketing sales figures, but what if they do?  millions of kids ages 12 and under will be forced to face their own shoe tying deficiencies.  so this should serve as a word of caution to all “time challenged” parents who buy their children non-lacing shoes – one day they may be forced to lace a shoe…. will your kids be ready????



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