Obviously all of this is completely dependent on your child and we are not parents but who can give gentle advice better than someone who is completely blind and has grown up with parents that have had to struggle through, getting advice wherever they can. We know it’s hard and you know your child best but sometimes even a bit of something that is meant to help can give you a basic idea on where to start.
- The first point is to treat your child just like a sighted child.
Yes, there will have to be difference obviously but this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t or don’t need to show them the basics of looking after themselves at the same times as any other child would be shown these things.
- Practice. Patience. Persistence.
When you’ve taught them something let them practice. They won’t remember how to do it from the one time you showed them so they will need practice. This means being patient and not taking over just because it might be quicker or you hate seeing them struggle (we know it’s difficult).Finally, persist, once things start getting more complex it will take longer for your child to pick things up. They will need encouragement to persist themselves and you will need to persist in terms of keeping on showing them repeatedly until they get the hang of it.
- Show. Share. Sit.
Show them a few times first how to do something, then once you’ve shown them make sure you do it with them by sharing the task. Finally, sit in the same room and watch them do it if they struggle in the sit stage then remind them of how to do it whilst remaining where you are (I find tying myself to the chair helps stop me from trying to help by using my hands!).