Time to Potty Train

We’ve covered toddler tantrums, now for potty training. Oh the joys of being a parent! We thought this topic was appropriate as many parents will wait for Spring/Summer months before taking this challenge on. Here are our top tips!

Potty training does not have a season; however the summer can make it easier. First of all they’ll be wearing less layers than they do in the winter (maybe completely bottomless), but they’ll also be able to spend more time outside (so less accidents inside, yay!).

It’s always a good idea to have a couple of weeks set aside to take on this task. Summer can be a great time for this because of the Summer holidays. Being home with your child for several days in a row can often be the best road to success. Not many children can go from being potty trained at the weekend back into a child-care setting on the Monday.


When do they need to start?

All kids are different, some say girls start earlier than boys. The age for potty training can vary massively, and it’s nothing to worry about. Some may start around 18 months whilst others aren’t ready until 3/4 years.

Don’t start too early

Starting your little one’s toilet training before they’re ready is not likely to see earlier results. Either you or your little one will know when they’re ready.

The first sign of your child’s readiness is when they begin to notice their nappy being wet or dirty, they may even start to tell you when they’re about to go. React to their awareness rather than letting their age dictate. They also may start displaying an interest in others’ use of the potty, or copying their behaviour.

Let the training commence

Introduce the potty to your little one, explain to them what it is and how to use it. It might be nice to go to a shop and let them choose their own potty, making it exciting for them, and making them feel grown-up. At home, leave the potty where they can see it. You can even demonstrate to them by using some of their toys, or you can always let them see you using the toilet.

With boys it’s a good idea to start with them sitting on the potty before standing.

There are also some really useful and helpful books that you can read to your child to help encourage them, such as “Skip to the Loo, My Darling!” by Sally Lloyd-Jones, and “You Can Go to the Potty” by William Sears.

Try to stay at home for the first full day, and try to ask your child every 40 minutes if they need to have a wee. If they do, then sit them on the potty and see how it goes.

Praise your child when they do use the potty as this will help to encourage them to use it next time. Some parents like to use a sticker or star chart to help with this.

If an accident happens get your little one to help to clean up, this will make accidents less appealing.

Sun’s out bums out!

Summer can be a great time to tackle the potty because you can do it outside in the garden, reducing the collateral damage.

It also means that you can allow your child to wear nothing on their bottom half; this can be really helpful in the potty training process because:

  • It’s easier for them to feel when they need to use the toilet.
  • Less likely to want to have an accident as it won’t be caught by clothing.
  • Easier for them to go to the bathroom.
  • More casual, less stressful (for your child).

However, you will need to make sure that they know that going bottomless is only appropriate at home, and not around guests.

What to do when you’re on the go

Potty training and travelling can be a scary thought to say the least. Easy removable clothing is a must, and training pants are a good idea. The training pants will help to put your own mind at rest. Travel potties are also a very useful piece of equipment to have. One very popular brand is the My Carry Potty, they come in bright colourful designs making them more fun for your little one.


The BabyCenter Blog provides a list of must-have potty training supplies you should have on you at all times:

  • A spare pair of clothes, and training pants or Pull-Ups.
  • Flushable wipes
  • Zip-top plastic bag

Treat travelling and outings as a learning experience, it’s the perfect time for your little one to get to grips with the existence of the potty outside of home.

Staying dry in the night

It takes longer for children to stay dry throughout the night, so it might be a good idea to keep nappies on until they’ve mastered the potty training. A way to tell if they’re ready to try nappy free nights is if their nappy is dry in the morning for a few days in a row. There will definitely be some accidents but it’s all in the process of learning.

Websites that may be helpful: