Some kids have no problem getting potty trained, for others, it can be a nightmare. Some kids see their parents use the toilet and adapt to a potty very quickly. Other kids seem to believe that the potty is their worst enemy and want to have nothing to do with it. What is the best way to have success at potty training? Start with a plan.
We bought a potty training book and created our potty training plan. Unfortunately, I no longer have the book, but there are many books you could buy and I encourage you to do so before you create your potty training plans. Here are the essentials of our potty training plan:
* We did potty training over a holiday week, in our case, the week between Christmas and New Years, when we did not have to work. The reason is that we wanted to make sure that we had enough time and attention to focus on getting the job done.
* We bought a second hand, “doll that pees”. We put a bottle full of water into that doll, sat it on the potty and when it peed, we did a major celebration. We kissed the doll, hugged the doll, danced in circles with the doll, threw the doll in the air, etc. We even had our son kiss and hug the doll.
* We had our son remain bottomless during the time of the potty training. The reason for this is, we wanted to know immediately if he was peeing.
* We offered him unlimited supplies of drink, including his favorite, apple juice, so that he would need to use the potty as soon as possible.
* Every 15 minutes or so, we would ask him “do you need to use the potty?” Eventually, he said yes, sat on the potty and peed.
* When we peed, we did the same “major celebration” as we had done with the doll. We kissed him, hugged him, danced in circles with with him, threw him in the air, etc.
* If he forgot and peed on the floor, we did not scold him or act upset. We just said, “What a pity” and cleaned it up quietly. We gave him more juice and continued with our plan, asking him every 15 minutes if he needed to use the potty.
* After about 3 days of this routine, there were no more accidents. My son was potty trained. He stopped using diapers during the day, and only used them at night.
What do you do if this does not work? You can resort to Plan B, potty treats! Buy some treats that your child loves, put them in a jar and keep them in plain site. When someone in the house uses the toilet, they get a treat. Everyone in the family (Mother, Father, Sister and Brother) should be drinking as much as possible and using the toilet as much as possible. Every time someone uses the toilet, they get a potty treat. But potty treats are ONLY given to those who use the toilet. If your child cries and begs for a potty treat, refuse until they use the potty. Eventually they will get the idea. Why save this for “Plan B”? I actually do not like using food or treats as a reward. I think it gives the wrong message about food. But if the initial potty training plan does not work, you need to have this in reserve as a backup plan. In most cases “Plan B: Potty Treats” will work.
What are your favorite potty training tips?