Monday, July 9, 2012

Potty Training for the Visual Learner

Recently, I have stumbled upon a new discovery when it comes to Ethan - he is, without a doubt, a visual learner.  The fact that he just might have a learning style of his own first occurred to me in the beginning stages of potty training.  It seemed as if he wasn't quite hearing the constant reminder that "pee and poop go in the toilet - not your underwear!" and it was causing much frustration all around.

Then, one day, a little voice inside my head reminded me of all that differentiation I used when teaching in the classroom.  I came straight home and asked my artist of a hubby to draw him a chart; if he wasn't hearing us, maybe seeing it would be helpful.  After all, we were already using a sticker chart to show-off his successes, so why not add explicit drawings of where his business should go?

That original chart helped tremendously! Between adding stickers to his "potty train" and having the visual reminder above the toilet, we found that things were really starting to click.  In fact, I can count the number of accidents he's had in the past two months on one hand, and I attribute it to the visual cues.

So, lately, when I realized Ethan was having a hard time with the entire bathroom process, I asked Jeramie to get out the markers once again.  We sat down with him and explained each step of the process as Jeramie drew it out.  After the 20-or-so minutes it took to draw and explain, Ethan grabbed the chart and began repeating each step as he pointed to the corresponding picture.  We hung it on the wall beside our downstairs toilet and he refers to it every.single.time he's in the bathroom.

While I know it's not rocket science, it is proving to be amazing.  I am continually reminding myself that this boy of mine is developing into his own person - opinions, personality, learning style, and all.  Figuring this out about him has made such a huge difference in how I interact with him and how I expect him to understand me.

I know many of y'all are in a similar stage of life as we are, so I wanted to share our new strategy on the off chance that it will help you as well.  Here's to learning all we can about our kiddos and making our lives a tad bit easier in the process!


Linking up with The MOB Society


Sherry Reese said...

Great idea, Joye! I am super impressed by your husband's artistic abilities. My 5 year old still sometimes forgets the steps of this process (of course it is usually more because he is in a hurry to get back to whatever game he was playing or show he was watching). Maybe I need to make him a chart! :-)

Stefenie said...

Fantastic idea!! Your hubby did a pretty darn good job on his drawing. It even made me giggle! :) I think I see a new "pin" for Pinterest! {wink}

BlessedMommy said...

I couldn't resist. I pinned it, LOL. The art is awesome.

Dawn @ Bent, not broken said...

This is so brilliant!! Can he make me one for night potty training? LOL This really is awesome..

Allison Hoffman said...

what a fabulous idea! Considering I still have two more in diapers,coming up the ranks, I'm going to keep this in mind!!

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