Thursday, February 13, 2014

The Ultimate Potty-Treat Scoring System

We've now done potty training with two kids — with reasonable success. (Only one to go!)

With the latest round, Kelly has perfected the potty-treat reward system. So I feel like I should share it with other parents.

Here's how it works:
1.) If you place the child on the potty and she goes pee, she gets one potty treat.
2.) If she goes poop, she gets two potty treats.
3.) If she goes pee and poop, she gets three potty treats.
4.) And if she initiates the idea of sitting on the potty (without any prodding), she gets an additional treat.

That means the maximum achievable number of potty treats is four. This is basically the home run of potty-going.

The key is using something relatively small as a treat — say, an M&M or a Pez. The system probably wouldn't work as well with cupcakes or Snickers bars (unless it's actually a training exercise in childhood obesity).

The hope, of course, is to make this so routine that kids forget to ask for treats. This has worked pretty well with our children.

I suppose a clever child could game the system and continue to collect M&Ms well into the teen years. But at least M&Ms are cheaper than diapers.