Instructional clothing system and method

The invention provides an instructional system and method for young children, or adults with limited cognitive ability, to dress themselves. The invention takes advantage of the ability of young children, or adults with limited cognitive abilities, to respond to visual clues and instructions. Thus, the invention provides directional indicia that are integrated into the surface of a garment for guiding the user to wear the garment without assistance.

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Description
BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1. Field of the Invention

[0002] The invention relates to an instructional system and method for young children, or adults with limited cognitive ability, to dress themselves. More particularly, the invention provides a system and method that allows young children, or adults with diminished cognitive ability, to dress themselves using directional indicia disposed on various locations of a garment.

[0003] 2. Description of the Related Art

[0004] Young children, or adults with diminished cognitive ability, often have difficulty dressing themselves without significant assistance. These individuals may become frustrated when they attempt to dress themselves. The problem is magnified with clothing items such as coats, jackets and button-front shirts and blouses that require the wearer to sequentially place their arms through sleeve openings or arm-holes as they place the clothing item onto their back before securing the item with buttons or clasps disposed on the front of the garment. Young children in particular often have a difficult time determining where to place their arms in order to wear the clothing item, often resulting in the garment being worn backwards, upside down or inside out.

[0005] The task of dressing young children, or adults with diminished cognitive ability, becomes even more daunting in situations where they are present in larger numbers. For example, in a classroom, a teacher may find him or herself assisting a large number of children with putting on their coats or jackets. This can place additional time pressures on teachers. In order to assist young children with dressing themselves, parents may attach markings or instructions to their clothing items. However, these markings are typically not uniform as they are designed by individual parents. Such markings are also typically attached onto the clothing items so they must be placed on the clothing item every time it is worn and removed once the clothing item is on the child's body. This requires significant time and energy on the part of parents.

[0006] Thus, there is a need for a uniform instructional system for assisting young children, or adults with diminished cognitive ability, with the task of dressing themselves that takes advantage of their ability to respond to visual cues and instructions. In addition, there is a need for such a system that is integrated within the clothing item so as not to require removal or maintenance before or after use.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0007] In view of the difficulties described above, the invention provides a system and method for assisting and instructing young children, or adults with cognitive deficiencies, with how to dress themselves. The invention takes advantage of fact that such individuals often respond well to visual cues and instructions when trying to learn new tasks or remember tasks that they have not yet mastered. The invention provides directional indicia disposed at various positions on clothing items which direct the user on how to wear the garment. The directional indicia are integrated into the garment, and thus do have to be installed prior to use or removed once the garment is worn.

[0008] In accordance with one embodiment of the invention, the directional indicia are disposed adjacent to the openings for each of the sleeves so as to direct the user to place their arms into the sleeves in a direction indicated by the directional indicia, thus, allowing the user to wear the garment.

[0009] In accordance with another embodiment of the invention, the directional indicia are oriented in a manner so that the user is directed to dress in a manner not typically used by adults. In this manner, the user, following the directional indicia, slides his or her hands into the sleeves of the clothing item, then flips the garment over their head allowing their arms to slide through the sleeves so that the garment is then placed onto the body.

[0010] In accordance with another embodiment of the invention, the directional indicia are shaped as the outline of hands allowing the user to place his or her hands over the outline indicating the direction in which their hands should enter the sleeve opening in order to wear the garment.

[0011] It should be understood that both the foregoing general description and the following detailed description are exemplary and explanatory, and provide further explanation of the invention as claimed.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0012] The accompanying drawings, which are included to provide a further understanding of the invention, and are incorporated in and constitute a part of this specification, illustrate embodiments of the invention. Together, with the written description, these drawings serve to explain the principles of the invention. In the drawings:

[0013] FIG. 1 shows the instructional system in accordance with an embodiment of the invention incorporated into a garment;

[0014] FIG. 2 shows the instructional system in accordance with another embodiment of the invention;

[0015] FIGS. 3-6 sequentially illustrate a method for using the instructional system in accordance with an embodiment of the invention.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS

[0016] FIG. 1 shows the instructional system for assisting young children, or adults with diminished cognitive abilities, with dressing themselves in accordance with an embodiment of the invention. FIG. 1 shows a garment 100 which is shown laid flat and oriented upside down (e.g., if laid flat on a floor, with the interior of the garment facing upwards, with the collar of the garment near the feet of the potential wearer and the exterior of the garment against the floor). The garment 100 is also opened so that an inner lining 106 of the garment 100 is visible. Sleeves 102 and 104 of the garment 100 are also shown laid flat. The garment 100 also has sleeve openings 112 and 114 through which a user places his or her arms in order to wear the garment 100. Directional indicia 108 and 110 are disposed on the surface of the inner lining 106. Thus, the directional indicia are integrated into the garment 100.

[0017] In accordance with this embodiment of the invention, the directional indicia 108 and 110 are arrows pointing in the direction of the sleeve openings 112 and 114. Thus, as will be described in greater detail below with reference to FIGS. 3-6, a user (not shown) places their hands into the garment over the directional indicia 108 and 110 and then slides their hands in the direction indicated by the directional indicia. This results in the users hands and arms entering the sleeves 102 and 104. As this point, as the user's arms are entering the sleeves 102 and 104, the user lifts the garment 100 over their head so that their arms completely enter the sleeves 102 and 104. Through this action, the user has accomplished wearing the garment 100 and the directional indicia are 108 and 110 are no longer visible. It is important to note that the directional indicia 108 and 110 may be any of a number of symbols or indicia indicating placement or direction, such as, but not limited to, arrows, pointers, or the outline of hands or portions of the hands, any of which instruct a user where to place or insert their hands in order to wear the garment.

[0018] FIG. 2 shows the instructional system for assisting young children, or adults with diminished cognitive abilities, with dressing themselves in accordance with another embodiment of the invention. FIG. 2 shows a garment 200 which is shown laid flat and oriented upside down as described above. The garment 200 is also opened so that an inner lining 206 of the garment 200 is visible. Sleeves 202 and 204 of the garment 200 are also shown laid flat. The garment 200 also has sleeve openings 212 and 214 through which a user places his or her arms in order to wear the garment 200. In FIG. 2, the directional indicia are in the shape of hands 208 and 210 that are disposed on the surface of the inner lining 206. Thus, the hands 208 and 210 are integrated into the design of the garment 200. In accordance with this embodiment of the invention, the hands 208 and 210 indicate the position where a user may place their hands in order to wear the garment 200 as described below.

[0019] It is noted that in either of the embodiments of FIGS. 1 and 2, the indicia may be removeably affixed to the garment, such as by velcro or the like. This would enable the indicia to be interchanged or removed.

[0020] FIGS. 3-6 sequentially illustrate a process for instructing individuals how to dress themselves using the instructional system in accordance with an embodiment of the invention. FIG. 3 shows a user 302, in this case a young child. The user has hands 304 and 306. FIG. 3 also shows a garment 308 which includes the instructional system in accordance with an embodiment of the invention. In FIG. 3, the garment 308 includes an inner lining 310, sleeves 312 and 314 and sleeve openings 316 and 318. In FIG. 3, directional indicia in the shape of hands 320 and 322 are disposed adjacent to the sleeve openings 316 and 318.

[0021] As shown in FIG. 4, the user 302 places their hands 304 and 306 onto the outline of hands 320 and 322 (not visible) and then slides their hands towards the sleeve openings 316 and 318. FIG. 5 illustrates the next steps in the process for using the instructional system in accordance with the invention. In FIG. 5, the user 302 continues moving their hands through the sleeve openings 314 and 316 (shown in FIG. 4) and simultaneously hoists the garment 308 over their head. The user's arms then slide through the sleeve openings 316 and 318 (shown on FIG. 4). In FIG. 6, the user's arms are almost completely through the sleeves 312 and 314 (shown in FIG. 4) of the garment 308 and the garment 308 is properly oriented with respect to the user 302. The garment 308 then slides down the user's body and is properly worn.

[0022] It will be apparent to those skilled in the art that various modifications and variations can be made to invention without departing from the spirit or scope of the invention. Thus, it is intended that the present invention covers the modifications and variations of this invention provided that they come within the scope of any claims and their equivalents.

Claims

1. A system for facilitating the placement of clothing on a human body, comprising a plurality of directional indicia disposed at predetermined locations on a garment having sleeve openings, wherein the directional indicia are disposed adjacent to the sleeve openings.

2. The system in accordance with claim 1, wherein the directional indicia provide a user with a cue for wearing the garment.

3. The system in accordance with claim 1, wherein the directional indicia are one of an arrow, a pointer and an outline of a hand or portion of a hand.

4. The system in accordance with claim 1, wherein the directional indicia are integrated into the garment.

5. The system in accordance with claim 1, wherein the directional indicia are not visible upon wearing of the garment.

6. A jacket facilitating the placement of clothing on a human body, comprising:

a main jacket body;
a first sleeve attached to the main jacket body;
a second sleeve attached to the main jacket body;
a first sleeve opening formed at the intersection of the main jacket body and the first sleeve;
a second sleeve opening formed at the intersection of the main jacket body and the second sleeve; and
directional indicia disposed adjacent to the first and second sleeve openings.

7. The jacket in accordance with claim 6, wherein the directional indicia provide a user with a cue for wearing the jacket.

8. The jacket in accordance with claim 6, wherein the directional indicia are one of an arrow, a pointer and an outline of a hand.

9. The jacket in accordance with claim 6, wherein the directional indicia are integrated into the jacket.

10. The jacket in accordance with claim 1, wherein the directional indicia are not visible upon wearing of the jacket.

11. A method for wearing a garment, the garment having a main body, a first sleeve attached to the main body, a second sleeve attached to the main body, a first sleeve opening formed at the intersection of the main body and the first sleeve, a second sleeve opening formed at the intersection of the main body and the second sleeve and directional indicia disposed adjacent to the first and second sleeve openings, the method comprising the steps of:

placing a user's hands on the directional indicia and in a direction indicated by the directional indicia;
sliding the user's hands into the first and second sleeves via the first and second sleeve openings;
raising the garment over the user; and
sliding the user's hands through the first and second sleeves so that they are exposed, resulting in the garment being properly worn.

12. The method according to claim 11, wherein the directional indicia are one of an arrow, a pointer, and an outline of a hand.

Patent History
Publication number: 20040019951
Type: Application
Filed: Jul 30, 2002
Publication Date: Feb 5, 2004
Inventor: Gay Cioffi (Washington, DC)
Application Number: 10207065
Classifications
Current U.S. Class: Overcoats (002/85)
International Classification: A41D003/02;