I used the 3 day potty training method with my son and daughter. The basics of it are:
- Diaper free from day 1 (this include pull ups)
- Celebrate successes with huge positive reinforcement (more on that later)
- Accidents should be met with a mildly disappointed face and calm demeanor with kids helping to clean them up.
- You don't really leave the house for more than an hour.
The key to this is that you potty train your kids between 20-28 months old as long as they are showing interest. If they are not showing interest, DO NOT potty train. You will hate your life. My son was NOT interested and the year long battle was not worth it.
Our 3 days with the peanut were pretty good. Day 1 we got her up, took off her diaper, put on her panties (although they say to let them be 1/2 naked, panties were a motivator for our girl) and she had 1 accident late that night. We cleaned it up and I was sure that day 2 was going to be just as easy.
Side note: We do use pull ups at night. There is a lot of peer reviewed evidence out there to show that night time potty training has a lot to do with brain maturity and that if the child's brain is not mature enough to wake them up they will have accidents, even if you limit liquids.
Day 2 was full of accidents and frustrations. My son got to go with my aunt and that really upset the peanut so she was over potty training. I had been rewarding her successes with jelly beans and now even the jelly beans and pretty panties were not enough to motivate her. Kid just wanted to go. So we went to Target and picked up a bunch of prizes. I did the same thing with my son and it was a game changer.
Here is a list of 10 potty prizes that will not break the bank.
Once we picked up our potty prizes, we came back home (we also practiced using the potty about 5 times in the store, without success but we tried). She had one success, we celebrated big by calling our grandma and our auntie and picking out a prize. She really wanted her bigger toy but that was reserved for poop. Day 2 ended with a accidents but a positive happy child who was willing to keep trying.
Day 3 was much better. We had one accident and it was my fault because she was in the bathroom, I just wasn't right there to help her get on the potty and turn the lights on. She started to tell me she needed to go potty and was earning prizes left and right. She also earned her big prize.
The last 3 weeks have been going pretty well. She has not been in a diaper since we started and is pretty good about telling us she needs to use the potty. During the wedding we were all so busy that she was in a pull up for portions of it (like the actual ceremony), but even then she was telling us that she needed to potty. I do recommend the 3 day potty training method IF your child is showing signs they are ready.
What would you add to my list of potty prize ideas?