How do you know that your toddler is ready?

I never start younger than 24 months, sometimes later for boys. Often children who are late talkers are also late potty trainers. The average age for girls to be toilet trained is 29 months, and for boys it’s 31 months.

IF they are starting to indicate to you that they have gone potty in their diaper, by pointing, or giving a vocalization, sign, or word for “potty” then they are about ready. They need to be aware of it and show that they notice and don’t like it.

  1. Prep:

Use potty books, use songs, start talking to them about the toilet and “mommy goes on the toilet” mommy wears ‘panties” etc. make it a positive exciting thing.

  1. Buy necessary items:

Get the potty chair and make it a big exciting thing and the pull ups. “It’s for you  – for big girls! Don’t get your pull ups wet. They’re so cute.”

Here’s a link to all the things I think you’ll need on Amazon:

  1. Get them comfortable:

Get them comfortable sitting on the toilet. For some kids this can be hard.

  1. Distraction:

Books and songs. If they sit for 5 minutes for a book not only is that learning time but it’s also hopefully distracting them enough to go. I say 5 minutes is plenty. Maybe 10 if they are enjoying the activities.

  1. Motivations:

Stickers, a special toy or special treat. First  for sitting on the toilet for 10 seconds, then for sitting for a whole song. Once that happens then it’s a sticker or treat for actually going. If they go a little tiny bit that’s a good start.

  1. Schedule:

YOU usually know when the need to go. Try and beat them to it. I’d say take them to the potty every hour or hour and a half. Ask them frequently, “Do you need to go potty?” …“You will get a sticker!”

  1. Consistency:

Starting and stopping is NOT going to help. I’d say once they have gone in the potty three times on their own, then go buy special panties or undies. Let them pick it out. Tell them it needs to stay dry because they are special. You can put them over the pull ups if they are freaking out about the underwear feel. Or if you are still having lots of wet pull ups. As the pull ups stay drier longer, you can put them in just the underwear. However, if the are just in underwear and they have an accident they can really feel it and they usually don’t like it and then want to use the potty more often. That should be motivating. For naps and bedtime I’d stick to the diapers or pull ups for awhile longer.


Potty training songs:

Potty training books: