Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Potty Training Tips

Summer is here! For many parents of toddlers, that means school is out, schedules change, and activities are being planned. Parents of toddlers often wonder, "Is this a good time to start toilet training?"

Though there is no exact age to start potty training, typically, many toddlers develop the physical, mental, and emotional skills to tack the task by 18-24 months. For others, those skills may emerge closer to age 3 or 4.

What is most important is that the child and parents are ready and the process is experienced as a joint, pleasurable venture; not something that feels forced, required, shameful, overwhelming, completely frustrating or exhausting. Without a patient, calm, supportive, consistent, nurturing environment, there is the risk that a child may feel inadequate or badly about him/herself, believe he/she is disappointing parents, or experience anger. Resentment and frustration may then breed in both the child and the parents. For toddlers, potty training represents a psychological need to give up some part of him/herself. though liberating, it can be frightening too.

Once the emotional foundation is set and everyone is engaged and committed to start potty training, there are some basic things you can do it make it a good, successful experience. Our friends at Victoria Chart Company have come up with 10 Steps to Successfully Potty Train using My Big Star Reward Chart. Here is what they suggest:

Potty training can prove to be a messy business and the thought of starting it a daunting one!

We would therefore like to help and guide you through this process. Below are 10 steps to successfully potty train using My Big Star Chart as a rewarding tool for kids.

1 Make sure your child is ready
Signs of readiness consist of your child staying dry for at least a couple of hours, they show an interest in bathroom activities, they take themselves to a quiet place or tell you when they are doing something. Summer is the ideal time to potty train - less clothes are worn and time spent outside make the little accidents easier to deal with.

2 Plan for it
Potty training is a process that will require a lot effort, not only from yourself but from friends, family members and carers involved with your child. Decide upon a date from which you will all start - it is from this date you say good bye to diapers during the day.

3 Set up your chart
Hang your My Big Star Chart in a clear, visible place. This will be a central focus for you and your child to work from. Place the potty training sticker in the top position of the chart. Let your child know that this will be their special sticker for using their potty and they can earn lots of rewards. You may like to add some other activities to the chart too.

4 Teamwork
Consistency and routine from all involved will help your child reach their goal. You may like to forewarn visitors of your efforts so they can be positive and encourage as you do. Forwarding these notes to those people who look after your child in your absence will help them to achieve the same goal. Children will love showing friends and family their chart.

5 Actively involve your child with their potty

You may like to take your child on a shopping trip to choose their potty - which colour would they like? Is there a character one they particularly like? Tell them it will be their own special potty, they may even like to choose a name for it. Decorating the potty with stickers will help them take ownership of it. You may like to demonstrate their special toy using the potty.

6 Prepare your child
Encourage your child to sit on their potty before they properly start using it, practice putting on pants and washing their hands to complete the task. It is at this point you should start praising and rewarding your child with a smiley face reward sticker, remember to tell them how well they are doing.

7 Don’t rush your child when they use the potty
Let them look at a book, or listen to short story for a few quiet moments when sitting on the potty. Blowing bubbles is another great way to encourage them to sit still. Tell them it is a good try and well done for sitting nicely even if they don’t achieve anything, again reward them with a smiley face sticker for their efforts.

8 Be patient, positive and consistent
Be patient, potty training does not happen over night. Positive interaction will help your child achieve their new skill, and feel good about their progress. Accidents will happen but continue to keep up the routine, when you choose not to use diapers - stick with it! Going back and forth between diapers and pants gives your child a confused message. If you experience naughtiness or defiance - stay calm, ignore it, do not reward.

9 On the go
Long journeys will take slightly more preparation than usual. You will need to make more regular stops so make sure you leave enough traveling time. Pack all familiar supplies including books and toys when using the potty on route. You may like to take some reward stickers for the journey - children love wearing these.

10 Achieving success

In a short space of time you will start to see great results. Use the enclosed gold star reward stickers to reward when your child does exceptionally well such as asking to use the potty, using the potty of their own accord, remembering to wash their hands, choosing to use the grown-up toilet. We wish you every success!

My Big Star Chart is available to purchase online at www.VictoriaChartCompany.com for $18.99.
Use coupon code ‘DRDDUVAL’ and get 15% OFF of our whole range of products.