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I imagine this is a common issue. Parents decide that it is time for their son to start wearing a yarmulke. He, being in the range of 2-4, doesn't recognize the value of having something on his head that falls off when he turns upside down. What are some effective strategies for getting a young child to be willing, or perhaps even excited, to wear his yarmulke?

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Skirts often have that same issue. –  Double AA May 26 at 23:57
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Maybe this is too simplistic YEZ but using kipot with bright colors, cartoon characters, sports teams, the child's name, etc., might encourage him to wear it. –  JJLL May 26 at 23:57
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@JJLL That seems valid. (I don't not have an answer, I'm just fishing for other suggestions.) –  YEZ May 27 at 1:27
    
Patience.......... –  Seth J May 27 at 2:14
    
This is a parenting question not a Judaism question... –  Shmuel May 27 at 4:20

2 Answers 2

You might want to take him to the store to pick out his very own yarmulke. Now it is his choice and he is doing it because he wants to do it. And every day he wears it he is wearing his yarmulke that he picked out.

I have found that it is always best to give children choices when the choices are limited to approved behaviors. Children thus feel empowered and no longer feel that they are simply taking orders from a parent but are making the decision themselves.

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I don't think this is as big of a problem as you would think. If his father always wears a yarmulke, that alone could excite him: "You get to wear a yarmulke just like daddy does!".

With regards to it falling off, you could always add clips.

Just like with regards to everything in child-rearing, if the kid grows up in an atmosphere that honors Torah and Halachah, he is more likely to honor and respect the Torah and Halachah on his own. He is then more likely to return the yarmulke to his head on his own if it falls off.

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Thanks for the response. I didn't think it is a "big" problem - I just see it being something to consider. Personally, my son will yell that he wants cavities and denounces all future rights to anything with sugar in it because we want him to brush his teeth. And not all kids have hair long enough for clips. –  YEZ May 27 at 1:26
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Re "With regards to it falling off, you could always add clips": thumb tacks work great. –  msh210 May 27 at 5:42
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@msh210 thumb tacks work great for people who are bald. But, as funny as that is, I don't recommend you suggest this to your rebbe. Nor should you suggest that he transplant some of his beard hair to his head to make it easier to wear a kippah. –  DanF May 27 at 13:45

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