How to potty train your child in daycare

If your child is ready for potty training at daycare and at home, then teamwork is the word you need to keep in mind. Potty training in daycares is practically an everyday occurrence, so you shouldn’t encounter too many hurdles with your fellow potty trainers. Oftentimes, the fact that your child is surrounded by children who are clean and wear underpants rather than diapers is enough motivation.

To use a potty or not?

Some children proceed to be potty trained at daycare and at home with the help of the notorious plastic potty, while others prefer sitting directly on the “big people” toilet with a special toddler’s seat fitted on top. There is no harm in proceeding differently at home or at the daycare, but it is important to bear in mind that your child may want to identify with his daycare pals. The positive influence of peers could help move things along.

Diapers, training pants and underpants

Oh, so many choices. It may seem difficult to know where start. Opinions differ from one parent to another as to how long these methods should be used. Some parents swear by training pants, while others totally avoid them. You can also speak to your childcare educator about what other parents are using or have used.

What about during nap time?

Although many children are toilet trained for the daytime, they may have small accidents during the night or at nap time and that’s quite normal. During the potty training period at daycare, your child may have to go through a transition period of wearing pull-up diapers at nap time and underpants the rest of the day. This will help your little one be more comfortable, and it will also make things easier for the childcare providers.

Consequences and rewards

This is a sensitive issue that you absolutely must discuss with your child in order to avoid any confusion. Confusion can sometimes result in a regression. Do you intend to reward your child for trying and/or succeeding? How are you going to manage accidents and regressions? There is evidence to suggest that discipline is misplaced when it comes to potty training, so it's best to talk to your daycare provider or doctor for advice about this if you’re unsure. Some daycares have a program that uses stickers to reward children who use the potty or toilet correctly every day or every week. This positive reinforcement method is often appreciated by parents and children alike. You could set up a similar system at home to encourage your little one to pursue her efforts in the evenings.


The important thing when it comes to potty training in daycare and at home is to work as a team. Don’t hesitate to discuss your ideas and questions with your child’s care provider.

How to potty train your child in daycare
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