Potty-Training Series: Part 1/3
Potty Training Series: Part 1 of 3:
How to know if your child is ready to be potty trained & how to prep them:
Potty training is something that can be daunting to tackle. It does take time, perseverance and consistency. There is no set age that you should begin to potty train rather, it should be based on your child's readiness. There are some specific signs you should be noting to see if your child is ready:
1. Does your child alert you when they need a diaper change?
2. Are they soiling their diaper less often? I.e. able to hold their elimination longer
3. Do they wake up clean and dry from a nap?
4. Are they able to pull up and down their own pants?
5. Can they get on and off a small toilet without help?
If you are seeing these signs from your child, they may be ready for potty training! It is a good idea to start slow and speak positively about it. A few weeks before attempting, buy a potty training chair and let them use it with their toys at first. You can model how to use the potty chair by using their toys as a demonstration. Go through the entire process, for example: make believe with a toy or baby doll “I have a funny feeling in my tummy right now, I think I need to go potty. I pull down my pants and sit on the potty. Maybe I should sing myself a song while I wait (sing a song). Hmmm, nothing is coming out. I will try again later.” Your kids will get a kick out of the “show.” Then demonstrate the toy going again, and this time when it tries, something comes out. Then go through the motion of wiping, pulling pants up, and washing hands. Let them practice with their toy. During this time, make sure to talk to your child about potty training. Explain how they will use the potty instead of a diaper because they are such a big kid. Lastly, a week or so leading up to potty training, track when they are using the bathroom and the frequency they are using it. This information will help serve as your guide and will help you in knowing when to have your child sit on the potty.
Think of what motivates your child and how you can use this to your advantage to help with the potty training process. For example, my daughter was highly motivated by treats. I found that having her earn just one gummy or dried fruit, was enough motivation for her to sit on the potty.
A day or two before you begin the potty training process, take them to the store with you and let them pick out their new underwear, their new potty chair (if you want to keep one for their toy, which may work well as an incentive. During the time they are using their potty chair, their toy can also be sitting on a potty chair), and the incentives to motivate them (whether it be snacks or small toys).
Make a potty training chart. Here is a free printable version. Involve them in the decorating process (color of the paper, coloring it, and the stickers they will use to put on their chart for trying).