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: 24-27 Months

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Demonstrates a pattern of toileting needs (i.e. when and how often)

Situations for Observation of Skill

Interview the adult.

Elicitation Strategy

Ask the parent about the time between toileting needs.

Behavior Observed

Typically, the child establishes a pattern urinating every two or three hours, or even longer.

Routines-based Intervention (Embedded Instruction)

Early childhood educators and parents do not always pay close attention to the child’s toileting patterns. They may, for example, only change the diaper at times of convenience. Encourage them to watch for the child’s toileting cues and check the child frequently. Once the pattern is established, early childhood educators and parents should put the child on the potty within the timeframe of the pattern and prior to the need being expressed. Praise every effort and do not be critical of lack of success. In fact, say nothing. Do not give eye contact, communicate, or play with the child during diapering. Just change the diaper and return the child to activities. This removes any reinforcing aspect of diapering. Picking out “big girl” underwear with favorite characters on them is a big motivator. Avoid pull-ups, as the child does not feel the irritating wetness.

 North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 2015

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