Potty training rewards can often make or break the task's success. The trick to a toilet training reward system is to make the reward something that your child wants, be consistent with the reward and periodically reevaluate the process. Creating a working potty training system is not difficult, but requires analyzing you and your child's personality and the length of time you want to spend on training.
Step 1: Consider Whether Rewards Will Work
A reward system for toilet training is a great idea, but it won't work for every child. If your child has responded to rewards in the past, it is likely that a reward system will assist in training. However, if a reward has not motivated your child in the past, a reward system will probably not help you in your undertaking.
Step 2: Identify the Motivator
The next step in creating a potty training reward system is to identify what motivates your child. Some children prefer treats and others toys, while others prefer the ability to engage in an activity. The reward given to your child for using the potty should be something she appreciates and does not receive on a regular basis. A reward that your child receives regularly or at other times will not push her to use the potty. Stickers, candy, ice cream outings and new toys are all rewards. At first, the reward system should be delivered every time your child uses the potty; later, it can be delivered after a few days or a week of continuous use.
Step 3: Put the Reward Where Your Child Will See It
Children remember what they see. A reward kept near the potty will only be seen when the child is on the potty. Rather than limit your child's view of the reward they receive for using the potty, place the reward several places around the house. This will help your child remember that the reward comes when she uses the potty, which will push her to analyze whether she needs to go to the bathroom.
Step 4: Talk about the Reward System
A reward is pointless if your child does not know it exists. Additionally, any potty training will fail if you do not provide your child with instruction on how to use the potty. Tell your child that you are beginning potty training, inform her of what that means, provide a lesson in using the potty, and then explain the reward system. A short lesson will set you and your child well on your way for training.
Step 5: Be Strict
A reward that is no longer solely affiliated with potty training is not a motivator. Only give the reward whenever your child uses the potty. At first, "using the potty" might be defined as anytime your child sits on the potty. Later, however, "using the potty" might need to be changed to include anytime your child actually goes to the bathroom in the potty. Using the reward at other times will remove it from being solely affiliated with toilet training.
Step 6: End the Reward System
After your child uses the potty by herself for at least a month, it's time to end the reward system. This important step is often overlooked. However, knowing when to end the reward system allows you to use it for another purpose at a later time.