Easy Potty Training? Follow these simple steps

Halsey Schools Preschool Infant & Toddler Care in Woodland Hills

Potty Training is easy when you follow these steps

Determine if your child is ready to use the potty on his or her own

If your child has most of these skills, your child will soon be completing another milestone at school and at home; using the potty! Children are usually ready around 2 years old.

  • Follows simple directions
  • Remains dry for at least 2 hours at a time during the day. Dry after nap time.
  • Regular and predictable bowel movements. Some may have bowel movements every day and some may have them less frequently.
  • Walks to and from the bathroom, pulls down own pants and pulls them up again
  • Seems uncomfortable with soiled or wet diapers
  • Seems interested in the toilet.
  • Has asked to wear grown-up underwear.
  • Wants to do it.

Let your child decide when he/she is ready

Even if your child shows all the indications of being ready, let your child make the decision. Forcing never works and will prolong diaper wearing.

Introduce the Potty Chair or Potty Seat while still using diapers

When your child starts to show the readiness signs, we recommend getting a potty chair at home. Then encourage your child to sit on it and observe you in the bathroom as you talk about the process. At the same time we’ll introduce your child to the toilet with a potty seat at school. Getting familiar with the toilet makes starting the real process easier.

Potty training should start at home and be coordinated with teachers

Make sure to let us know when you’re ready to start. Then pick a weekend and follow our steps below. Constant communication between teachers, parents and children is key. So let us know what is working and not working at home and we’ll do the same.

Here is how we help our children learn to use the potty at school

We suggest you do the same at home. Consistency is very important.

Words to use

Go potty, pee pee, poo poo, wee-wee, penis, vagina, bottom, private.

A calm, unrushed, easy going approach works best

It won’t happen overnight. The process can’t be hurried. When children are ready they’re ready. When they’re not, they’re not. Expect it to take some time and be patient and calm.

Observing others helps

At school your child will be able to see how other children use the potty and we will discuss all the steps; Knowing when it’s time, undressing, going, wiping, dressing, flushing, and washing hands. Lead by example and demonstrate at home too as you talk about and demonstrate the feelings, needs and steps.

Practice – Pretending is often a good way to start

To get familiar with the process and vocabulary, it sometimes helps to go through all the steps without trying to go or even removing clothes.

Your child should go directly from diapers to underwear

Pull ups are not used at school and shouldn’t be used at home. They do not help transition your child but instead hold back progress.  They will confuse your child, “Are they underwear or diapers?” Essentially they are just diapers that are easier to get on and off.

Dress your child in easily removable clothing

Elastic pants, shorts, skirts or leggings are best. No belts, onesies, or overalls should be worn. The easier it is for your child, the better.

Encourage your child to use the toilet regularly

Set up regular intervals for your child to try to use the potty and learn how to recognize when it is time. We always go before and after eating and sleeping. And before and after going outside.

Accept that accidents will occur

If an accident occurs, encourage your child to change and clean on his/her own with your help.

Keep changes of clothes on hand at all times

Your child will need to have at least 2 changes of clothes with shoes and socks on hand at all times.  Please check cubbies daily for dirty clothes to take home.

Never shame or embarrass for accidents

Be positive and reassuring at all times and share the knowledge that success will come. Just say something like: “It’s ok, accidents happen.  We will just keep trying to make it to the potty.”

Reward potty success with praise and recognition but don’t go overboard

“I’m so proud of you! You knew when it was time to use the potty!” “How does it make you feel? Are you proud?” Giving stickers or stamps and/or using a star chart can sometimes be beneficial. But never “bribe” with prizes, rewards, privileges etc.

Never force it

Never set a certain amount of time to sit on the potty or force to sit until it happens.

♫ Sing our favorite potty songs ♪

When we use the potty we often sing songs and rhymes. They make it fun and help your child remember the necessary steps.

♫ Where do we make our poops and pee?
To the tune of This is the way we brush our teeth
Tinkle, Tinkle, little pee ♪
To the tune of Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star
Where do we make our poops and peep
Our poops and peeps, Our poops and peeps
Where do we make our poops and peeps
We make them in the potty!
Tinkle, Tinkle, little pee
in the potty you will be
Poopy, Poopy stinky-O
in the Potty you will go
Tinkle, Tinkle, little pee
in the potty you will be

Read our favorite potty books

We LOVE Once Upon a Potty & The Potty Book

Expect Setbacks

Setbacks happen and that’s ok. Expect them and let them go. You child may be taking a temporary step back to a more comfortable place, which helps support later progress.Expect setbacks

Use a diaper at night time and know that staying dry at night may take some time

Most likely your child will still need a diaper at night. Nighttime dryness may take an additional six months to a year.  When you start noticing your child is waking up with a dry diaper,  it is time to go diaper free at night.

Now you’re ready to start potty training! 🙂

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Jenni Rice - Owner & Director
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