3 Potty Training Techniques That Demonstrate Potty Training

children using puppets to demonstrate how to use the potty

All the experts agree: one of the best potty training methods is to demonstrate what they have to do. This helps everything seem more natural to your children.

Just one problem: This can be weird for us! Guys don’t even like to be too close to another person at public urinals. The idea of demonstrating good toilet habits to a very young child feels downright strange.

Fortunately, it doesn’t have to be that way. We’ve put together a definitive list of potty training techniques that you can use to demonstrate potty training, all without making it weird for everyone involved.

Technique #1: Use Props

You can use a doll to help demonstrate the actual act of going to the potty. And the benefit of the doll is that you can also demonstrate everything that leads up to going to the potty.

Together, you and your kid can pretend to give the doll something to drink, and then help the doll pull down its underwear and sit on the potty.

This potty training technique is simply modeling the behavior you want your kid to emulate. It seems simple, but giving them the authority over someone else going to the potty (even a toy) will help them feel responsible enough to master their own potty training. Your child will feel familiar with and confident about the routine by the time he tries it himself.

Technique #2: Make a List, Check It More Than Twice

This potty training method involves the same advice you probably give your child: use your words.

Create a checklist of what you do when you go to the bathroom. It can be a simple checklist, something like: “pants down, underwear down, sit on the toilet, go, wipe, flush, wash.” Print copies of this checklist out and take a copy with you when you go to the bathroom. Use easily recognizable symbols (like a pair of jeans or a bar of soap) so that your child can understand the list without reading it.

When you come back, show your child that you have marked all of the boxes. And verbally walk them through each step.

This potty training technique helps to normalize the act of going to the bathroom for your child. Best of all, it gets them used to using the checklist, which is a really useful way to make sure they don’t skip an important step, like washing their hands.

Technique #3: Outsource

Start this method by finding family members or friends you are close to and who have children a little bit older than your own.

With their permission (and, more importantly, their kid’s permission), you can have your child go into the bathroom with the other child and see how things are done. There’s no doubt about it: your kid actually seeing how the whole process works will help them learn much, much quicker.

The only downside is that you’re passing the weirdness of your own bathroom demonstration to someone else. But hey—isn’t that what family is for?

Additional Potty Training Resources

Time to Ditch the Diapers! 10 Parent-Approved Potty Training Techniques

30 Best-Ever Potty Training Tips

Dr. Chris Snellgrove

Dr. Chris Snellgrove is an English Professor and veteran freelance writer. However, his most difficult student has always been his own son! He struggled and eventually succeeded with potty training his son, and went on to apply those skills to training his nephews.

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