7 Secrets to Planning for Potty Perks
5/30/2008 | by
We’re all motivated by a little encouragement when learning a new skill. Students strive to make the grade. Athletes look for coach’s approval.Potty trainers work the same way! Rewards for a job well-done are an effective way to cheer on potty training progress. Here are some secrets to planning successful potty perks for when your child is ready.
Make a Plan. Even before your child has started, start thinking about a reward system that will work for both you and your child. Keep it simple and easy to stick with. One candy-coated chocolate for #1, two of them for #2! A sticker on the chart for sitting on the potty! Decide what’s easy and motivates your child, plot out your personal rewards program and when the time is right to start, get your child excited about it.
All Shapes and Sizes. Rewards come in all shapes and sizes. And they don’t always have to be edible or tangible—just attainable. High-fives, hugs or a special potty hand-shake can all be ways of saying good job! Anything that praises progress is a bona fide perk in your child’s eyes. One day it might be long-distance bragging rights with grandma. The next day, ice cream!
Popular with the Potty Trainers. Rewards that are easy and immediate work best for both short attention spans and busy moms. Some popular favorites for potty training include stickers (like currency to a toddler!), a reward chart, honor badges, and the always popular Big Kid® Certificate. Be ready when your child is. Check out the PULL-UPS.com Big Kid® Activities for great ideas like the new printable door hangers—each one celebrating a new milestone!
Praise along the Way. Once you get started, you don’t have to wait for a major accomplishment to load on the praise and rewards. Celebrate the little milestones along the way to keep building to the successful completion. Some smaller occasions to celebrate with your proud potty trainer include:
Sitting on the potty.
Wearing Big Kid® pants.
Letting you know when it’s time to go.
Using the potty successfully.
Flushing the toilet
Pulling on pants on his own.
Washing his hands.
The list of reasons to celebrate goes on! Once you’ve started, keep your eyes open and catch your child doing something right.
Mix it Up. Plan to keep your potty training perks and praise bright and exciting for your child. One day down the road, you might find the luster of a special treat has worn off. Be ready to freshen it up with a new special bonus. Keep some reward and praise ideas in the hopper for the home stretch when interest can start to wane. Here are some ideas to keep in mind along the way:
Sticker on a progress chart.
Playing a favorite CD or DVD.
Phoning a special relative.
Reading a favorite story together.
Playtime with a special toy.
Getting a big hug or high five.
Loading on the verbal praise—“Good job!” “You did it!”
Get Creative. Have some fun in planning for ways to motivate your child’s progress. Some fun ideas we’ve heard from clever parents include one mom who used the potty chair as a progress chart---adding a sticker to the lid after each success. Another mom keeps a potty perks jar full of marbles. One marble gets added for each success. When the jar is full, a special field trip is earned. The best ideas are usually not expensive or complicated.
Is this Bribing? Some parents might worry that rewards are merely bribes. We say an earned privilege is just that. If it’s achieved through meeting a goal—a reward or praise is not only okay—it’s great for your child’s self-esteem! If you’re concerned about dangling carrots, stick to praise and fun rituals. Hugs, high-fives, a special potty victory dance or privileges like delaying naptime are all big hits with potty trainers.