Helping Parents in Potty Training

My current students range in age between 23 months-3 years 10 months. Potty training is one aspect of my program, and parents seek out my services specifically because children do not need to be potty-trained in order to be enrolled in my home-based preschool.

Here are a few common mistakes parents make:

1) Readiness – Children develop at different stages, and not every child is ready at the same time. When a child is ready, they will show an interest in using the potty. They see other children using it (in a child care setting or observing siblings) and strive to have the same independence. Forcing a child to use the potty when they are not ready only leads to potty training becoming a traumatic experience.

2) Inconsistency – Once children are ready, and they are no longer using diapers, accidents will happen. It is important to be patient and not show disappointment/frustration at children who have accidents. They are part of the learning process. Do not switch back to diapers – it only leads to more confusion.
 
3) Pullups – Once a child is ready, they need to be in underpants. The “wet” feeling helps them understand what happens if they do not go when they have the urge to pee. Pullups confuse a child because they still can wet themselves but feel dry. When it is time, switch from diapers to underpants. No pullups – it just prolongs the transition.
 
4) Potty Schedule – When children are learning to use the potty, they need guidance to know when to use it in order to avoid accidents. This is a confidence booster as well. As they exercise their muscle to urinate, they will learn to feel when they need to go and choose to go on their own, when they feel it. In the beginning, a child needs to sit on the potty every 2 hours throughout the day to succeed in peeing in the potty.
 
Hope these tips help parents in support of their child’s growth and development.
 
~Ms. Julia

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