For most kids, going shopping for school shoes is a chore to get finished as quickly as possible. As a parent, you may be tempted to do the same thing, but as chaotic as the whole experience may get, you want to at least walk away with a good pair of school shoes. Below, we have listed a few of the top tips to help you choose the perfect pair.
When to Buy
Lots of good, forward-thinking parents like to finish off the school year by looking at the list of requirements for the following year, and checking things off as soon as possible. While this is a great way to ensure you get the best price for a book and aren’t left rushing around last minute, it’s not the best approach to take when buying children’s clothes. Kids can grow at such a fast pace that shoes bought in June might not fit in September. In order to get the most mileage out of a pair of shoes, buy them in late August or early September, just before the school year starts.
Although fashion changes and certain shoes go in and out of style, we all have a pretty good idea of what school shoes are supposed to look like. Generally, we go for brown or black leather style shoes that they can wear to other nice occasions. While that’s fine in terms of style, there are now a lot of similar looking shoes that offer completely different levels of protection. Since we live in Ireland, one of the most important things to consider is how dry and warm the shoes will keep you child’s feet. This is especially important if your child has to walk more than a short distance to school, or spends a lot of time playing outside. You may be buying the shoes in summer, but they could be in use throughout the winter, so make sure they’re winter-ready.
Most kids will learn to tie their shoes by the age of 6, though it may take a little longer for some. Since you don’t want your child to be singled out, or to simply tuck their laces in their shoes, you should make sure that your child is comfortable tying their shoes alone before buying a pair with laces. Some schools may have a policy about velcro straps, so check the school’s uniform guidelines before buying these. If they are not permitted, a pair of slip-ons is your best option.
Lots of kids have feet that are wider or more narrow than you might expect, but that’s no cause for concern. Most kids’ feet will grow into proportion, and lots of stores now sell shoes that will accommodate feet of all shapes and sizes. If you are having trouble finding shoes that fit them after shopping around, you may want to consider seeing a podiatrist to have orthotics fitted. But the biggest mistake to watch out for in terms of fit is buying too big. A lot of parents are tempted to get shoes that are half a size too big, so the kids will grow into them. The problem with this is that half a size is quite a lot when you’re a child, and this just means that the shoes they’re wearing are too big, which will make the child less comfortable and more likely to fall.
Buying shoes may seem simple, but like all things that involve children, it can be trickier than we first assume. These are a few of the main tips that will help you find shoes for most children, but if your child has trouble finding shoes that fit and are comfortable, you may want to consider taking them to a podiatrist. While most children will eventually grow into their feet, they may have a legitimate underlying problem. If so, addressing it as early as possible is the most effective way to treat it.