North Carolina Early Learning and Development Progressions: Birth to Five

Domain: NC Foundations for Early Learning: Health and Physical Development (HPD)

Subdomain: Self-Care

Goal: Children develop independence in caring for themselves and their environment.

Skill Progression: Toileting

Age: 18-21 Months

Click here to go to all skills for ages 18-21 Months.

Indicates need for toilet with words or actions, but often too late

Situations for Observation of Skill

Interview the adult. Toileting is dependent on family expectations and background, and cultural differences. Type of diaper used also impacts feeling of wetness, so children who wear pull-ups may not feel wet.

Elicitation Strategy

Ask the adult if the child is verbally and/or physically indicating the need to go.

Behavior Observed

The child verbalizes the need to go to the bathroom (e.g. “Pee-pee,” or “Go potty.”) The intent is to tell the parent about the need for the potty chair, but the request is often made too late.

Routines-based Intervention (Embedded Instruction)

Encourage parents to observe the child’s pattern of urination and defecation. Then place the child on the potty chair at these intervals and also likely times when urine will have accumulated (e.g., after a nap or drinking a lot of liquid). Provide incentives for the child to urinate on the potty. A sticker chart or drawings of happy faces the child sees the parent add are motivating.

 North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 2015

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