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How to Use Sticker Charts for Potty Training

by Maggie McCormick

During the potty training process, it's helpful to reward your child for potty use with a small token such as a sticker, notes the American Academy of Pediatrics. This helps foster a sense of accomplishment and encourages her to want to use the potty more often. Placing these stickers on a chart is a tried-and-true potty training method.

Choose a sticker chart that reflects your child's personality. The easiest way to incorporate a sticker chart is to print one from a website. Choose one that has a favorite animal or character and print your child's name on the chart. This makes it clearly her potty chart.

Hang the chart in a highly visible location. This might be in the bathroom, where she can immediately see her results or in the kitchen or play room to remind her that she should try to go.

Explain to your child how he can earn stickers. Some parents offer a sticker for giving it a try, while others reward only the potty successes. You may also choose to give more stickers or a bigger sticker as a reward for a bowel movement.

Allow your child to choose her sticker and place it on the chart. Even if you're using cheap stickers from the dollar store, let her choose from the available options. She may be more excited about the stars she picked than the hearts you picked. Peeling it off the paper and placing it on the chart helps practice fine motor skills as well.

Phase out the sticker chart as your kiddo becomes fully potty trained. You don't need to continue it forever. You're likely to see that after he's mastered the task, he becomes less interested in receiving a reward for doing it, so you can simply stop handing them out.

Items you will need
  • Sticker chart
  • Tape
  • Stickers

Tips

  • All caregivers should be on the same page when it comes to reward. Let your the other parent, babysitter or your child's grandparents know how you use the sticker chart and when to reward your child.
  • Some parents give out bigger rewards for reaching certain milestones. For example, after receiving 20 stickers on the chart, you might give your little one a small toy that you know she'll like. Build counting skills by counting the stickers together.

Photo Credits

  • Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images