I read a book on potty training and went through a checklist many times, I think she is more than ready. But the book says I need a block of 4-5 days at home to do nothing but potty training her, in order to achieve success, I struggled with taking leave for 4-5 days just for this purpose hence I procrastinated. It also requires a lot of consistency, which is something I am quite bad at.
So Kah Yen went to school with diaper. I was awfully guilty.
These are the basic signs of readiness I observed: She has regular bowel movement in the morning and is already trained to poo in the potty; her diaper can be dry for one or two hours at times; she has a strong desire for independence; she is interested when I use the toilet; she understands and follows most instructions; she knows the meaning of "Pee" and "Poo" and say them.
When I was at school with her on the first day, I was really delighted to hear from her English teacher that she can help to potty train Kah Yen. I was told most of the two-year-olds in the class are already potty trained. There is one boy who started training recently and the Chinese teacher brought her to the toilet regularly every 30 minutes. I was very impressed with the patience and dedication of the teacher.
So on the second day of school, I ditched the diaper and put Kah Yen on training pant. Talking about minimizing changes and transitions in young children's life, I think I went totally against the rule!
I don't know exactly how the teachers do it. I think they just try to bring her to the toilet at regular intervals till she grasps the idea that pee is only meant for the potty/toilet. I was expecting them to put her on diaper for afternoon naps so everyday I pack two spare diapers in her bag, but they are never touched. I am sure accidents do happen because twice she came back with a bag heavier than usual, and I found soaked pants in plastic bags. We didn't ask for a detail report everyday but the teacher told us on the first week that Kah Yen can go one to one-and-a-half hour without wetting her pants, which is very good progress according to the teacher.
We do the same at home too. We sit her on potty in the morning when she wakes up, and in the evening before dinner and then before bedtime. Last Saturday we brought her out in the afternoon and I totally forgot to bring her to the toilet till almost two hours later, and I was happy to find out her pant was still dry. Sunday morning I let her wear her training pant to Sunday school, when I picked her up two hours later, she was dry.
These are very good progress, but, until now it is still us or the teachers taking the lead, not her. Potty training cannot be accomplished without her taking the lead to tell us when she needs to use the potty. I think we still have a long way to go.
Last Friday, she came back home running to me in the kitchen screaming "I want to pee! I want to pee!" Thinking it's just her way of trying to get my attention after a day's school, I replied to her "Kah Yen, be patient, let Mummy finish cutting this vegetable first." Then she screamed again "I want to pee! I want to pee!" and looked completely restless. Daddy followed in and said she has been asking to pee since they were on the train.
Then it suddenly occured to me that, she was controlling her urine and now telling us she wanted to pee. She is taking the lead.
Bravo! I think we are almost there. Let's see how consistent she will be for the next few weeks, we might use one of those potty train charts or reward charts to reinforce, if necessary.