Potty Training 101: Port Style...

Well we officially have a number 1 and number 2 going child that uses the toilet during waking hours.  Yes I said waking hours because our little bug is a HARD sleeper and I have chosen not to delve into potty training during sleep since he is not even 2 and a half yet.  We use pull-ups during nap and night time.  He normally keeps those dry during nap but not at night yet.  We have chosen to wait for now, I know there are different thoughts on that area.  Some might even consider him not trained because I still have to take him to the toilet, help him with his pants, and help him wash his hands but I am just thankful I am not buying 2 sets of diapers anymore....

How did we do it?  Well I picked a lot of brains, read some articles, scoured the internet, read a book on the topic and then threw it all out the window, just kidding, I kind of pieced it together based on what I know about Solon.  He is a kid that likes to know the consequences and rewards before beginning, is hesitant to try anything for a first time and likes to be praised, not punished for his work!  SO, then I dug into my teaching tools (yep dusted them off a bit) and decided that little thing we call "the gradual release of responsibility" model might just help me out a bit.  Without boring you too much, the premise is that you first model/show how something is done, then invite the student to do it together maybe even with non-examples before releasing the responsibility to them - also noting that you might go back and forth through the continuum based on the learner's needs - too much pedagogy for you....okay!


We gathered the supplies: Solon picked out fancy new big boy pants, some special reward stickers, Solon's favorite stuffed bear, a fisher price little froggy potty, the trainer seat for the toilet, a step stool for the sink and picked a couple of days we would be home all day!

The I do component has been done for a while now (not to get graphic but you have no privacy with a curious toddler - catch my drift :)

The we do was comprised of Solon and I jointly training the bear to go potty on the toilet.  The bear first had 2 successful trips to the toilet.  Solon pulled down the underwear and I squirted water into the toilet for effect, we flushed, pulled pants up, washed hands, set the timer for 20 minutes later, gave bear some "juice", and a reward sticker.  Then bear had an accident, we talked to bear about how big boys go to the potty in the toilet but that they do have accidents and that bear still had to try to sit on the toilet....later in the day bear successfully pooped in the toilet and got a special toy he had been admiring and then also had an accident.  Okay so Solon LOVED this - he was totally into it the whole day!

So the next morning, on went his underpants....for the you do portion of the lesson :)

We had read that if you give them lots of a preferred drink that helps so they have more opportunities to practice - sure enough 15 minutes later Solon peed his pants - ugh!  (did I mention he had no pants on just underwear - we turned the heat up).  We then drank more drink, did some fun things like watch his favorite shows, play with his favorite toys and he peed his pants again - dang!  This is when I thought....um....maybe he is not ready but I forged ahead.  Low and behold the third time he figured out how to push out the pee and away we went....the only time he had accidents is if I forgot to ask him to go or he got really engrossed into an activity.  Now we take him about 30 minutes after meals and right away when we arrive some place, otherwise about every hour....he does great!  Sometimes he even tells me - but that is not consistent yet

Now #2 - I tell you.  I have cleaned my fair share of underpants BUT I started recognizing his cues and time of day he prefers to go....right after lunch he would always ask to go to the basement alone - and then I would hear held breaths - ding, ding, ding!  BUT he would not go on the toilet and relax....enter the iPad.  One day, by God's wisdom alone, we decided to put him on the big toilet with a stool for his feet for leverage and the ipad (don't worry we sanitized)....and voila 25 minutes later, we had a pooper!  He still has to have this set-up but we have been successful for about 5 days now!  He got a huge reward the 1st time and got to go on a man-date to Target and pick out a toy!  Now he just loves the immense praise we give him! 

I know this method may not work for you or even for my next child but maybe like me you can take a tidbit from here and there - pray for a lot for wisdom (James 1:5) and find your way in potty training 101....best wishes on being #1 in the #2 business!