Friday, 23 November 2012

Toilet Training

Have you thought about how you're toilet training?

I've often heard people say, "It's time for you to go to the toilet now" or "come and sit on the potty". The child doesn't want to sit on the potty. He/she knows that they don't need to go. Forcing them often results in crying, screaming, kicking, the child being forced to sit on the toilet with no result, and often an accident occuring on the floor half an hour later. The child starts to hate the potty which delays his/her toilet training.

Toilet training means teaching children to recognize their own need to go to the toilet and to be able to physically hold it until they get there. First of all don't start before they are ready. They need to have developed the particular muscles and the ability to control them. They need to have the cognitive capacity to understand the cause and effect involved. They need to be emotionally developed enough to want to take care of their own physical needs rather than relying on having them taken care of the way a baby does.

After you've introduced them to the potty or toilet and they've shown that they understand how to use it, ask them if they need to go to the toilet. Ask them every hour if necessary. If they say "no" don't insist that they sit anyway. Respect their ability to recognize their bodily needs. Soon they will be telling you when they need to go.

This is toilet training, so expect accidents. If there were no accidents it would mean that they were already trained. Respond to accidents sensitively. Children don't want to feel like they have failed when they're learning a new skill. Simply clean the child and the floor and go on with the day. In an hour ask them if they need to do a wee. If they are successful, say "well done, you did a wee on the toilet". Don't use rewards for sitting on the potty. They will want to sit there all day. Especially avoid using rewards for producing something on the potty. If they don't need to go, they don't need to go!

(Don't agree - no problem! I just want to encourage you to reflect on your practice :)

1 comment:

  1. Agree - I'm in the Pre Kindy room next year and will be toilet training I need all the advice I can get....I dread toilet training!!