I put up a request for blogging topics on my Smockity Frocks Facebook fan page, and three people replied with, "Potty training tips, PLEASE!" (By the way, feel free to post requests or any chit chat you'd like on that fan page.)
These are the tips that have worked for me through six children. Give them a whirl if you'd like, and remember patience is the key.
- Only consider beginning potty training when you are positive the child understands the concept. With my first two, I was so anxious to begin that I pushed ahead when one wasn't ready and caused a LOT of unnecessary stress. Some signs of readiness I look for are: a) the child regularly announces what has taken place in her diaper, like "Mommy, I tee teed." b) the child wants to go to the potty and talks about it. c) the child is old enough to understand what you want to happen and where. I have found between 2 1/2 and 3 is the best age to begin, depending on the child.
- If at all possible, I like to potty train in the summer. This allows me to spend a lot of time outside in the backyard with the trainee wearing thin cotton panties. Naturally, accidents will happen, but the good part is the child can feel what is happening and relate that to the feeling of needing to potty. Plus, there's the whole easy clean up scenario of being outside.
- Set a timer and have the child sit on the potty for a few minutes every hour throughout the day. If nothing happens, don't make a big deal about it. If something DOES happen, heap on the praise!
- Have a jar of candy (I like to use Skittles) in plain sight to offer the trainee when the right thing happens in the right place. I posted about "Potty Training in a Large Family" and wrote about how I reward the trainee AND anyone who helps her get to the potty in time.
What about you? Please, share! Leave any tips or questions in the comments.