Week 6 Potty Lesson
Learning to use the potty involves developing a connection between a child's mind and body, bladder and bowel. The child senses what's going on within his body and learns to control it. There are three steps in this process:
- First, the child knows and communicates that he has gone pee or poop. Sure, it's after the fact, but this is an important step because it means he is aware that something has happened with his body: "There's now something in my diaper."
- Second, the child communicates that he is going right now. While he doesn't yet sense the need to go in advance, he feels the pee or poop starting to come out. Some children will even say, "I'm peeing right now."
- Third, the child senses that he's about to pee or poop. This much-anticipated moment occurs sometime between years two and three. The child declares, "I need to go potty." That's your cue to walk your toddler to the potty so he can perform.
This Week's Readiness Sign
There are two indicators to watch for this week:
Is your child's diaper dry for one and a half hours or so? If it is, her bladder muscles can now hold in her urine, rather than simply releasing it whenever her bladder is full.
Does your child stop playing when having a bowel movement? If she does, she realizes that something is happening with her body. When you notice this, go ahead and say, "You're pooping in your diaper. Someday you'll poop in the potty."
Don't miss the Week 6 Potty Project: Marking the Spot