Potty Training Rewards System

Excerpt taken from The Potty Trainer

Boy putting stickers on potty chart

Children always respond to praise. If you want your child to perform a particular task, give them a hug, kiss, or word of encouragement, and she will likely do what you ask.

Potty training can be greatly improved if your child is rewarded for using the potty.

However, be cautious when rewarding a young child when they use the potty because she may not yet be ready or able to go on command.

Therefore, she may become frustrated when trying to potty but is unable.

If she is unable to use the potty and does not receive a reward, then she might feel disappointed or punished for something that is beyond her control.

As a parent, you should approach the rewards for using the potty carefully. Rewards can be an extremely helpful tool, but it should be used when your child is "ready" to potty train.

If you are going to reward your child, you must explain that you are never mad or upset if they have an potty accident.

Toddlers should not feel ashamed or embarrassed if they are not progressing as fast as their parent's desire. Rewards should be explained as being an extra benefit for using the potty, and there should be no consequences for refusing to go potty.

The rewards should not be expensive or extravagant because this will cause the child to be especially disappointed if he does not go. The rewards should be small and simple extra hugs, kisses, and praise is good for starters.

Giving a child extra time to do his favorite activities is another good idea. Children that use the potty may get "extra" benefits, but a child who does not should still be given compliments for simply trying.

The most common reward system are potty training charts and stickers. The chart is excellent because it allows you and your child to monitor trends and progress. Placing stickers on the chart is usually a positive sign for achieving a goal of using the potty.

Stars, animals, or complimentary words are excellent sticker choices. Ideally the stickers should be placed on the day for the month or week when the child uses the potty. This should be a private time between you and your child so you can talk positively about what happened.

If you child did not go, you should explain that he can try again. You can choose your own reward system, but make sure you do not "bribe" your child to become dry. It is probably not a good idea to reward a child with candy or toys, unless a special circumstances arises. We tried using small chocolates when training our first child.

They worked the first few times, but they were a total failure in the long term. Our child became more focused on getting the prize than doing what was being taught. If the rewards are too exciting or too fancy, then you child may try too hard and become frustrated by his lack of progress.

When children are not interested in obtaining the typical rewards, consider trying exciting rewards that are kept under the parents' control. These are referred to as temporary rewards.

If the reward is something unique or exciting, like playing with their favorite toy, watching a movie, or playing a special game, the child is more likely to respond.

The children are allowed access to these items more easily, but for shorter times when they first respond favorably. The parent then keeps control of the item and does not allow access unless they respond more favorably the next time.

In other words, they receive increased access to the item when they perform, but not total possession.

Children are no different than adults; we all covet what we cannot have.

Excerpt taken from The Potty Trainer

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