Potty Training and the Primary Classroom

Discussion in 'Montessori' started by Primarycolors, Aug 14, 2008.

  1. Primarycolors

    Primarycolors Rookie

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    Aug 14, 2008

    I'd like to get some different perspectives. Do you require that a child is completely potty-trained before admitting them to the primary classroom? (By that I mean, the child is wearing underwear, they go into the bathroom and use the toilet independently, and when they occasionally have an accident, they can change themselves with little assistance.) Currently, as our toddlers are moved up to primary, we are experiencing a few kids who either have lots of accidents (2 or more per day) because they aren't responding to their bodies' signals (I'm assuming) or just refuse to use the toilet at all, until they often wet themselves but don't seem to realize or care that they have gone. These children have just turned three, and they experienced similar toileting challenges when in the toddler room (or so I was told.)

    They are supposed to be completely trained before coming to primary, and the teachers (I'm an assistant) are getting frustrated with this. It does take a lot of our time to deal with the accidents, and there will be a 1 to 10 ratio (or a little higher) in these classrooms come September. What is your school's policy regarding toilet training while in primary?
     
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  3. tracykaliski

    tracykaliski Connoisseur

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    Aug 14, 2008

    We start children at the beginning of the school year and we are not licensed for diapers, so children must be toilet trained. Pullups are not okay in any fashion.

    That said, we sometimes get children whose parents call and say they're not completely toilet trained. I ask the parents to bring in LOTS of clothes (like 6 changes a day) and when the child wets himself, we go to change. Typically kids like that aren't able to change themselves.

    Sometimes the problem is the clothing the children are wearing. Make sure they don't ahve any buckles, zippers, etc. I tell parents to put their kids in nothing but an elastic waist. Makes it very simple to use the toilet.

    And, in the meantime, I make sure I send the child to the bathroom at 2-3 hour intervals all day long.

    Sometimes transitions themselves can put children back in the toileting area. If the child had been toilet trained completely, coming into a 3-6 yr old classroom can be different. The activities are different, and they may just get so wrapped up in the moment that they forget. I've been teaching for 22 years and I see it ALL of the time.

    The children who end up wetting because of intense concentration eventually learn to get the signals their body is telling them even through their concentration. The other kids who need elastic waists and sent to the bathroom every few hours eventually get it too.

    I have only ever seen one child still wetting themselves by October. And that child ended up having some developmental issues and eventually went to a special school. MOST children will get it, it just takes patience and little care on our part as the adults in the space.

    Remember, they're only 3 and they're making a transition. Transitions are hard for most adults, and these children are small. Compassion and patience and meeting them where they are and gradually moving them forward will work wonders.
     
  4. Pattypoo

    Pattypoo Comrade

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    Aug 14, 2008

  5. montilover

    montilover New Member

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    Mar 6, 2009

    Sometimes I think the bladder itself needs to be shrunk. When my son starts wetting the bed, I know it's time to make him go every hour or 2 during the day (even if he doesn't need to go but a tiny bit). That seems to shrink his bladder and cause him to feel stretching - long before exploding. After a few days of that, the problem seems to go away and he also gets into a routine of going more frequently.
     

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