Tips for Successful Toilet Training in 10 Days

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Tips for Successful Toilet Training in 10 Days

Are you counting the days until your toddler is fully potty-trained and can enroll in preschool?

Have no fear! Hilltop’s Preschool teacher Mrs. Christine DeStefano is coming to your rescue! With more than 30 years of experience with preschool-aged children, and successful toilet training of her own two children, three grandchildren and hundreds of other 2 ½ to 4-year-old children, she is the unofficial potty training expert at Hilltop!

First and foremost: Is everyone ready?

This does not pertain to just your child. This pertains to everyone who will be with your child for the next 10 days! Mom, dad, family members, caregivers: toileting success really will revolve around whether each and every one is committed.

How do you know your child is ready?

  • Your child tells you that they need to go
  • He or she wants to be changed after soiling a diaper

Next, Do you have everything you need to begin?

This is big decision time: deciding on what works for your child.

Questions to answer:

  • “Will my son sit or stand?”
  • “Will my child use a potty seat or regular toilet?”,
  • “Do we need a step stool to reach the toilet and then the sink for hand washing?”
  • “Will we use pull ups at night?”

Some parents like to use a reward system, but if you do, be sure it compliments your lifestyle:­ do not use M&M’s if you don’t allow your child sugar. Ice cream is silly if it is a common dessert choice in your household. If you are using charts and stickers, let your child help in the selection process. Underwear? If your child loves Jake and The Neverland Pirates or Doc McStuffins, go shopping for underwear together! Are you using books? “Once Upon A Potty” and “Everyone Poops” are fun, if not a little outdated. Are you using a potty watch?

Now it is time to have the talk! That’s right, your child needs to know what’s up, what to do, and what the expectations are! By this time, you have set your start date:­ one where you will be home, uninterrupted, have everything you need or want, and have nothing else to do.

Here are my tips for success once you officially begin the process:

  • The morning of your start date, let your child know what is going to happen and what is expected. Set out the special underwear together. Set up the bathroom together.
  • If using a reward system, set the parameters.
  • Go for no clothing or very simple clothing.
  • Encourage fluids so your child can be successful on most attempts.
  • Take your child to the bathroom every 30 minutes.
  • Have your child “help” during cleanup attempts. Your child will have accidents. Patience. Is. Important.
  • Be Positive. Positive. Positive!
  • If using pull ups at night, do not put them on until your child goes to bed.

Tips for traveling while potty training:

  • Pack extra changes of clothing.
  • Always remember to limit fluids about an hour before you have to go out in the car.
  • Always have your child use the bathroom before you go out.
  • Be sure to travel with your potty seat or be very close to a toilet and be willing to stop.
  • Bring post it notes to cover over the electronic eye in public restrooms because auto flush toilets can be very scary.

And be sure to contact me at with any questions you have! Good luck and we’ll see you at school!