Monday, April 27, 2009

Potty Training

I have not one but, two boys (ages 2 & 3) to potty train. Though I am not required to train the second boy, I figured it might be good to train two boys at the same time. Boys are naturally competetive and it may work well...I hope. So, potty training is on my mind and I thought I might take a minute to blog about it.

I believe in waiting until a child expresses that they are ready to potty train. I still introduce the idea of potty training to lead them to the desire to do it. I found with my girls (now 8 and 5) that when I waited until they had less accidents. In fact, I think each of them had less than 5 total!

With my first daughter we found she liked to read. We put a small bookshelf next to the toilet. Since she loved to read she made progress quickly.

With my second daughter she did not fully potty train until she was 3.5 years. Uggghhh! But I knew it would be worth not cleaning up accidents. She loved Chuck E. Cheese. If she made it to the bathroom 10 times in a row, that was her reward. We used a sticker chart so she could see her progress. It worked and she was fully potty trained by then.

I had no idea with boys. Upon asking one of my friends who has three boys of her own) she quickly said, "turn them backwards!" Whoa, I never thought of that, but it makes complete sense. No mess!!!

Now some Mom's or Dad's may choose that for a boy it is only appropriate to teach them standing. To each his own. Since I'm the one cleaning up the mess (if there is one), I'm sticking with teaching them to sit down first!

I found some free printable potty training charts I thought you might like to try:

A few things I do/don't do to potty train:
- I do not use pull-ups, I think they are a waste of money and could encourage a child to put off fully potty training. If diapers are needed I use regular ones. It is only a small inconvenience to me.
- I don't ask, I just take them to the bathroom. Most of the time they will say no if you ask. But if you do not ask, you just perform the action they are likely to have or create positive feelings over going to the bathroom and they sooner realize it is a necessity, not really a choice.
- I do not use small potty's. I don't need to clean another toilet. I like them learning on a real one (personal preference).
- I encourage them the whole way. I let them call Daddy or Grandma/Grandpa when they have had a successful bathroom trip. It creates hype and gives them positive feedback. I even make up songs about using the potty. Here's one for boys: (to the Spiderman jingle)
Spiderman, Spiderman
goes to the bathroom
whenever he can!
I also say things like:
You went potty like a big boy.
You went potty like a lady. (big girl just doesn't seem right ;)
- I think the most important part of potty training is to make it a positive experience for yourself and the child.
What are your potty training tips???


Lindsay said...

We dropped a Cheerio in the toilet and asked if he wanted to try to pee on it. Sounds weird, but boys are funny like that, and it helped them work on their aim too.

Gina Rochelle said...

Here's a few links if you want to see the pictures of my desperate efforts in the potty training front:
Having all the kids run in and do the special cheer for him, seems to be a fun reward for my son. My 19-month-old gets really excited to cheer for his brother. I think it's been good to get him prepped as well. Thanks for the reard poster link.

Brianna said...

Gina, I should have known you already posted about potty training. I loved your posts. I have been so behind on blogging I decided to blog my thoughts today...I hope to catch up someday. :)

Unknown said...

Great post Bri!! We are venturing into this world soon (*bite lip) i know this will help

Shayla said...

There's never too many posts on potty training! Sounds like it's pretty applicable to most of us right now. Thanks for the pointers!

*sorry, I'm too new at it right now to offer any real suggestions...