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Honestly, what would we do without Velcro? Moms, teachers, and daycare providers would be tying shoes all day long. That's because most children lack the coordination to effectively tie their own shoes until they're at least around 4 or 5. By then, her fine motor skills will be developed enough and she can remember the multistep process required to tie laces. But plan on her still needing plenty of practice and a little help every now and then (which is why so many schools prefer Velcro sneaks). In fact, most girls don't master the task of tying their own shoes until age 6, and boys may need help until age 7. --Deborah Skolnik
Copyright © 2005. Reprinted with permission from the April 2005 issue of Parents magazine. Updated 2009
The answers from our experts are for educational purposes only. Please always refer to your child's pediatrician and mental health expert for more in-depth advice.