How To Potty Train

by How To Mommy on 08.03.11

Potty training is a daunting task.  Believe me, I’ve been dreading it and putting it off as long as I could.

My aunt jokes she used to make her kids beg her for “big kid” underpants before she began potty training and I thought she may have something figured out.

For the past four months we’ve been asking Little Miss R off an on if she wanted to use the potty.  Her answer, always a resounding “NO!”  That was, until one fateful night we had friends over and let the kids wear big kid underwear for fun and before we knew it they were fighting over the potty!

Reluctantly, I figured I may as well give it a go.  Since I wasn’t a huge fan of rewarding her with food each time she went, I decided I’d make a potty chart where she’d earn stickers and after 5 she’d get a “prize.”  Here’s what I did:

How To Potty Train Your Toddler

First, I gathered the supplies

  • A potty for each level of the house {we already had one}
  • Pull-ups for night/nap times
  • Flushable wipes
  • Kid-safe soap
  • Dish soap for each bathroom to rinse the potty
  • {We already had a few pairs of big girl underwear}

Next, I let Little Miss R pick out some fun “prizes” from the Dollar Spot at Target.  Each time she earns 5 stickers she gets a prize.

  • Coloring books
  • Reading books
  • Crayons
  • Nail polish
  • Dum-dum suckers {I wanted to avoid rewarding with food each time she pottied, but I figured every fifth time wasn’t a big deal}

Then I bought the supplies for the Prize Box and Potty Chart.

  • Stickers
  • Construction paper
  • Poster board
  • Lettered stickers

I crafted the Prize Box and Potty Chart and put them in their respective places.

Once this was done, I explained to her “the system.”  Each time she went potty in the chair she’d earn one sticker and once she has five she can get a prize.

For a week we just let her tell us if and when she had to go and wore a diaper all the time.  She loved putting on the stickers and picking her prizes {she’s yet to pick anything other than a dum-dum!}.

By now, her chart is almost completely full and she’s excited to go to the potty as soon as she wakes up.  We even bit the bullet and have worn big girl underpants all day today.

I know there will be accidents and we aren’t totally there yet, but in a week’s time we’ve made more progress than I ever could have hoped.  All in all, I’m calling my method a success!

What methods have been successful for you?

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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Amy August 3, 2011 at 9:46 PM

Way to go Miss R! 🙂

I started trying with O from about 18 months on, it wasn’t until she hit 30 months that she finally understood the concept of pooping/peeing on the potty all the time and not just half the time. She’s been in undies full time for 4 weeks now! I didn’t have to reward her or anything, she just did it. 🙂 The only advice is patience. We had a lot of accidents and a lot of false alarms over the year we tried.


2 How To Mommy August 4, 2011 at 7:31 PM

Way to go O!


3 Elizabeth August 4, 2011 at 10:05 AM

Great job, Miss R!! Sounds like your method will be a success! I love that she always chooses a Dum Dum!! Smart girl! 🙂


4 How To Mommy August 4, 2011 at 7:30 PM

Ha! Yup, she’s no dummy.


5 Noelle August 4, 2011 at 3:38 PM

Such cute ideas, the teacher in me approves! I will definitely be doing something like this whenever that magical time rolls around…


6 How To Mommy August 4, 2011 at 7:30 PM

So glad I have teacher approval. 🙂


7 Grandma Bonnie August 4, 2011 at 3:52 PM

Great system. Good luck with the potty training.
New follower, Hope you follow back


8 Becky August 4, 2011 at 6:50 PM

With my son, we had tried various reward systems and he just didn’t get it. He was waking up dry but would not tell us during the day when he had to go. Then one day I read the idea to just leave his bottom half naked. He would feel if he started to pee and run to the potty. He did not want pee on his leg!
He was trained doing it this way in just two days!


9 How To Mommy August 4, 2011 at 7:30 PM

That’s a great idea! She’s so attached to her “big girl” underwear now though, I can hardly get her to take them off. 🙂


10 Kim August 4, 2011 at 7:34 PM

Way to go, R!! Keep it up, mom! You deserve a “prize” too!


11 How To Mommy August 4, 2011 at 7:43 PM

Haha, thanks Kim! 🙂


12 Amanda August 5, 2011 at 4:40 PM

Way to go! Potty training is not easy work but looks like you are on the right track. Love the picture on the potty! I tried the prize system with my daughter but she wasn’t to into it. What worked for her was being naked for 5 days straight – and not leaving the house. She had 2 accidents and that was it. Potty Trained at 18 months. I don’t know how or why it worked but it did. I know I won’t have the same success with my son 🙂
Thanks for linking up today – new follower!


13 Katie @ Love, Lattes & Lullabies August 6, 2011 at 12:02 PM

This is great! We aren’t quite there yet, but when we are, these are great tips!


14 Amanda C June 26, 2012 at 4:10 PM

I’m doing 2 little girls at the same time. I will definitely use this trick!


15 How To Mommy June 26, 2012 at 4:11 PM

Good luck to you!!!


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