Inside: Are you about to potty train your toddler? It’s an act of nature, but there are a few potty training supplies that make the whole thing go more smoothly.
I decided my daughter would get potty trained at 13 months. That’s when my son was going to arrive.
I read all about early potty training and how people in African trained their babies by 13 month sor so.
They did this because cloth diapers required a lot of water to clean and that was a luxury and if people in Africa could do it, why couldn’t I?
I die laughing at my former self.
Needless to say, it didn’t work. Nor did it work a few months later when I was not prepared to “let accidents happen” and made her nervous. Soon enough, though, she figured it out and off she went.
I took a laid back approach with my second son and that worked out fine. I’m training my third son now. Again, we’re not making a huge fuss.
Each child will be different, and there are various approaches to take, but here are your absolutely essential Must Haves.
Absolute Must Have Supplies for Potty Training
- a good attitude
- a potty (or a good old fashioned toilet)
- baby wipes (some come in a flushable variety which are great to help train your little ones to wipe which can be tricky at this age)
- a step stool, depending on your child’s age and height
- a mattress protector (if you are attempting to potty train at night as well)
- a travel potty if you’re in the car a lot and want to get more freedom from diapers in public too
Well, now that we got those out of the way… let’s talk about some of the other helpful things that make potty training simpler.
Helpful Tools for Potty Training
And now that we know what is absolutely essential, let’s talk about what helps move things along. I know some people say to “wait until your child is ready no matter the age” but most of us aren’t willing to wait until our 4 year old is ready.
We need things to move right along, particularly if we need to put them in care or preschool.
Here are some helpful things I’ve personally done, used, or tried that may benefit you.
A potty companion is something you save specifically for potty time that engages your child and allows them to relax near the potty and associate it positively.
Potty companion supplies could look like basically anything:
- Specific books
- An iPad or particular games on an iPad
- Certain toys you bring out only at potty time
- A white board with a marker to draw on
- Markers and a notebook
- M&M’s, blueberries, or whatever treat you choose
You get the idea. Something you can break out specifically (and only) during potty time.
Potty Train in a Weekend book
My friend Becky wrote this book and it’s wildly popular, and that ain’t an understatement. Potty Train in a Weekend is, well, just that, tips on how to set aside a few days (they need not be Friday to Sunday) and start and nearly finish the potty training process.
She also tells you what to do in the event they will pee but not poop or regressions or any other scenario you can think of. This is a great tool if you already have a child you know is pretty much ready, but just needs a push.
Also helpful if you don’t have months and months of time to get it done!
Reward Supplies: M&M’s or Choc Chips or Kale Chips, Etc.
Many moms use a reward system for potty training.
I didn’t do it with my first two, but am giving it a go in conjunction with other things with my third.
He had a great potty training window a few months ago when I was Nearly Dead from Pregnancy Fatigue and it just wasn’t a time I could train him. Now that I’m able and want to get it done before new baby comes… he’s got his undies in a wad about wanting to wear a diaper.
So since he loves chocolate chips and a few a day won’t hurt him, we’re offering him 3 mini chocolate chips every time he sits on the potty and tries to go.
Even if he doesn’t, that’s okay.
So far he hasn’t abused this by trying to sit on it all day long, but it’s helping with his willingness to go!
15 Minute Timer
Honestly, the timer is a mom’s best friend.
You can use it in a myriad of ways throughout your day with kids. You can help minimize power struggles, signal what’s next, and to countdown when they have to stop doing something they love.
I essentially potty trained my firstborn by using a timer set at 15 minute intervals. Every time it went off, I let her push the button (you know kids love pushing buttons) and then we sat on the potty.
If she went, good, if not, fine.
We just set it again for another 15 minutes and did this for a few exhausting days until she was pretty well trained. If she said she had to go during that period we would just stop the timer and reset it for another 15 minutes.