So here’s the thing, I don’t want to sound like a know it all or anything, but I think after successfully potty training six kids, I may have the secret to potty training. I know what you’re thinking, “There’s a secret?” well, no there isn’t really a secret, there’s just a really effective method that has helped me when it came time to potty training my kids.
So now you’re thinking just spit it out already! Okay, okay! What if I told you that all it takes is a day to potty train your child? Would you think I was crazy or would you believe me (I do have six kids)? It’s a well known fact around our house that potty training is a one day event. So now that I have your attention, here is how I do it.
Once my child has shown an interest in actually using the potty (and no time before, because let’s face it, you can’t force a child to do much of anything) I spring into action. I want to make sure that that interest doesn’t fade without acting on it. Now, on to the good stuff.
In order to successfully potty train in one day you have to be prepared, because are you ready for this? You’ll spend your day in the bathroom. Yes you read that correctly, so make yourself comfortable. To make this day a success here’s what you’ll need: lots of water, I mean a LOT of water, plenty of salty snacks (think pretzels, popcorn, nuts), books, a timer, and a positive attitude. Kellen was the last child that I potty trained and when the day came I made it fun for him. I wanted to make him feel special so I told him we were going to learn how to go to the potty like the big boys do.
Bring books, water, snacks, and a laptop to the bathroom. I gave Kellen salty snack after salty snack and plied him with water so that he would have to pee. I set my phone timer for 10 minutes and had him pee every time the timer went off to get him used to peeing in the potty. Here’s where it gets good.
Every time he successfully peed in the potty, I clapped, jumped up and down, and sang a ridiculously silly made up song (in other words, I made a fool of myself) and it worked! He loved it. He went pee just to see me act crazy. We repeated until nap time (at which point we took a break) and resumed our training once nap time was over, this time allowing him to leave the bathroom but return every 10 minutes. This was a way to help him make his way to the bathroom when he needed to go.
Once dinner time came around we moved on to the big potty! That’s when I pulled out the “big guns!” Yes, I gave my child candy for pooping and peeing in the potty. Hey, you gotta do what you gotta do. The real test came the next morning when it was time to see if he remembered all that he had learned. He did! We did have a few accidents, but he got the gist of the whole potty training and we were able to build on that. So if you are about ready to take that next step and start potty training, good luck! My advice is to stay consistent, and make it a fun experience. There will be accidents (that’s to be expected when anyone is trying something new), but just keep it light.
P.S. If you’re looking for some great potty training books to have in the bathroom, here are a few of our favorites:
Everyone Poops by: Taro Gomi
Sesame Street P is for Potty
Potty Time by: Caroline Jayne Church
A Potty for Me! by: Karen Katz
Good luck and happy potty training!