by Elizabeth Pantley
Potty training is easier and happens faster if your child is truly ready in all three areas: physical, cognitive and social. But the big question is: how do you know when your child is ready? If you have never traveled this road before, you likely don't even know what signs to look for. Take this quiz to find out where your child is on the readiness spectrum.
1. I can tell by watching that my child is wetting or filling his diaper:
2. My toddler's diaper needs to be changed:
3. My child understands the meaning of wet, dry, clean, wash, sit, and go:
4. When my child communicates her needs, she:
5. If I give my child a simple direction, such as, "put this in the toy box," she:
6. My child can take his pants off and put them on:
7. When I read a book to my child, he:
8. My toddler wants to do things "all by myself":
9. I think that it's the right time to begin potty training:
Total the number of responses for each letter:
Most answers are a: Wait.
Your little one doesn't seem to be ready just yet. Test again in a month or two.
Most answers are b: Time for pre-potty training--get ready!
Your child is not quite ready for active training, but you can take many steps to prepare your toddler for the future. Gradual introduction of terms and ideas will make potty training easier when the time comes.
Most answers are c: Your toddler is ready to use the potty!
It's time to start your potty training adventure. Good luck, and have fun!
Are you between two scores? Just like any parenting situation, there are choices to make. If your child is hovering between two categories, it's time to put your intuition to good use. Your knowledge of your own child can direct you toward the right plan of action.
This article is an excerpt from "The No-Cry Potty Training Solution: Gentle Ways to Help Your Child Say Good-Bye to Diapers" by Elizabeth Pantley.
Elizabeth Pantley is a mom of four, a parenting expert, attachment parenting supporter and the writer of several parenting books, including "The No-Cry Sleep Solution: Gentle Ways to Help Your Baby Sleep Through the Night" and "The No-Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers and Preschoolers". Elizabeth is a regular radio show guest and frequently quoted as a parenting expert in magazines such as Parents, Parenting, Working Mother, McCalls, Redbook and on over 50 parent-directed Web sites. She publishes a newsletter, Parent Tips, that's distributed in schools nationwide.
Copyright © Elizabeth Pantley. Permission to republish granted to Pregnancy.org.