Since we announced that Darah is working on potty training, and that sign language is really helping out with this endeavor, today I’m bringing you a helpful guest post on this very topic! Misty Weaver is the Chief Editor of Baby Sign Language, a FANTASTIC online resource center for parents and family members who want to use sign language (just a little, or even a lot!) with their young children to help communicate. Check out her helpful tips on using sign language to help with potty training!
For stress-free potty training, try teaching your baby sign language. Baby sign language is a fun way to communicate with your baby, and the signs are easy to learn. Best of all – Baby Sign Language really works. Signing is ideal for times when words aren’t enough – times like potty training! Read on for a some great signs to use when potty training…
When To Start Signing For Potty Training
At least three months before you plan to begin potty training, start using the signs for wet and dry, pee and poo, diaper and potty. Use the signs for wet and dry when bathing or washing and drying hands. This will help when it comes to showing your toddler the difference between a wet diaper and a dry one, so he can understand when he has done a pee. Eventually he will understand enough to be able to tell you – or sign to you – that he has a wet diaper.
When you begin to sit him on the potty, make a big fuss whenever he does a pee in it, and show him the sign for Potty. Encourage him to sign Potty when he needs a pee, even if he does it in his diaper. The same for poo. When there are accidents (and there will be!), stay calm and merely sign Wet, so he knows what it feels like to wet himself. It’s important to sign calmly, with good eye contact, so your toddler can tell you aren’t angry with him.
It can be difficult for toddlers to get the hang of using the potty, and anything you can do to reduce any frustration is a good thing. This is why Baby Sign Language is such a great tool, as it doesn’t depend on a child’s ability to communicate verbally – an extra stress when trying to learn a new, important skill. Once he gets the hang of going on the potty, it will be easy for your toddler to tell you with sign language when he needs the potty, or if he’s had an accident, whatever his language skills at the time.
Make It Fun
Baby Sign Language can be an important part of communication for parents and babies, but it works best when you make it fun. Don’t take signing – or potty training – too seriously. Sign as part of your everyday routine and enjoy it!
Signs For Potty Training
Potty: To sign potty, make your hand into a fist with thumb peeking out between the index finger and the middle finger. Hold the fist out and shake it around a little.
It is like baby is ringing a bell to let you know it is potty time.
Diaper: Sign diaper by taking your hands and placing them down around your waist. Take your index fingers and middle finger together from each hand and tap them on your thumbs. It is like you are playing mini castanets at waist height.
Wet: The wet sign is made by reaching up with your hands bringing your fingers and thumbs together while pulling down. Use the wet sign for baby to tell us when she has wet her diaper and needs the diaper changed.
Thanks so much, Misty, for all the helpful info!
Want more resources? Check out a list of baby sign language products on Amazon!
What about all you great folks out there in bloggy land? Do/did you use sign language any with your kids? Any potty training tips to share???