Have you potty trained any kids? We will soon be working on our third. Two successes and you would think that we have this down. The catch is that our third is a boy (the first two are girls) so we have no idea if our past success will pay off.We will start with what we know and what has worked though.
So how do we potty train? We use “The Timer Method”. I have no idea where I read about this or if I adapted it from all of those boring and worthless potty training books I read when we were trying to potty train our oldest. No idea … motherhood has made me forget so much it is amazing. Anyway, the timer method is basic and doesn’t need any crazy supplies. So what is needed?
- Whatever potty you are using (big potty, potty seat, little potty … whatever)
- Underwear or panties (lots of them!)
- Your kitchen timer
- A long weekend
- A mass supply of what your child loves to drink
- Floor cleaners appropriate for your floor
- Laundry soap and an empty washer/dryer ready for action
- Potty rewards (candy, food, whatever your child loves)
- Your vice (whatever you need to survive … pick something, you will need it)
Make a huge breakfast with lots of drinks (milk, OJ, whatever your kids will drink). Go potty after breakfast. Get changed into clothes and underwear (We go pant-less for the potty training kid for the weekend to make it easier.) Set the time for 15 minutes. When the timer goes off, make a HUGE deal about it being potty time. Run to the potty and read or sing or something to keep your child on the potty for a couple of minutes. HINT: If you read, pick a short book that you can stand to hate because you will hate it after you read it a million times for sure! If your child goes potty on the potty, give them a reward (we are bad and use candy.) Expect accidents but when they happen, run to the potty and try to get your child to finish in the potty. Repeat for the whole day. Yes, I said the whole day. This is where the vice comes into play. Indulge in your vice when your child goes to bed (in pull-ups or a diaper!)
Day 2 is the same as Day 1. If you get to a time when the potty efforts are a success, try increasing the timer to 20 minutes then 25 to 30 to 35 to 45, etc. You get the idea. Expect more accidents. Remember to enjoy your vice at bedtime … go overboard a little with it!
Day 3 is the same as Day 2. If you are a brave soul, you might try to let the child let you know when they need to go but generally the timer is still needed or just your reminders. If you have run out of your vice, find another one to enjoy because you need something for this victory!
By the end of the long weekend, you will be ready to go back to work or leave for a vacation or both. The result though is worth it because your child now understands what it is like to feel like to need to go potty. There will be more accidents but this has gotten us to the 80-90% mark for day time potty training two times now.
What potty training method do you use? Leave me a comment and let me know!