Toddler Storytime: Potty

In Toddler Storytime this week I tried something new: a potty-training theme!

We started with Clap Everybody and Say Hello and our Scarf Song and Peekaboo:


Then we read a book with pop art/comic book style illustrations called I Use the Potty by Maria van Lieshout. The format lends itself to potty training very well by infusing the process with a lot of humor and pride, as the little boy becomes a Big Kid Superhero.

I got this flannelboard idea from, Five Little Toddlers Learning to Use the Potty:

five diapers

five pairs of underwear

The diapers I made didn’t stay on the board very well, so I think I’ll need to attach velcro to them. But they were very cute!

Five little toddlers were learning to go potty.
Each had a diaper tied up in a knotty
‘Til the first toddler said, “I don’t need diapers anymore!”
So she put on her big girl underwear
And that left only four.
(Count the remaining diapers.)
Now four little toddlers were learning to go potty.
Each one had a diaper tied up in a knotty
‘Til the second toddler said, “No more diapers for me!”
He put on big boy underwear
And that left only three.
(Count the remaining diapers.)
Now three little toddlers were learning to go potty.
Each had a diaper tied up in a knotty
‘Til the third toddler said, “I want to do what big kids do!”
So she put on big girl underwear
And that left only two.
(Count the remaining diapers.)
Now two little toddlers were learning to go potty.
Each one had a diaper tied up in a knotty
‘Til the fourth toddler said, “Diapers are no fun!”
So he put on big boy underwear
And left only one.
Do you think she’s going to go potty, too? Let’s find out!
One little toddler was learning to go potty.
She wore a diaper tied up in a knotty.
Then the fifth toddler said, “I need to potty—gotta run!”
She put on her big girl underwear
And that left none!
Just five big kids wearing big kid underwear!
No more diapers are hiding under there.
Let’s count them one more time! Ready? 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5!

(Source: You can view a video of the song here.)

We sang a song about washing hands to the tune of Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush:

This is the way we wash our hands,
Wash our hands, wash our hands.
This is the way we wash our hands
After we go potty.
This is the way we use the soap,
Use the soap, use the soap.
This is the way we use the soap
After we go potty.

Then we read A Potty For Me! by Karen Katz. It has the subtitle “A Lift-the-Flap Instruction Manual,” because in its gentle, toddler-friendly way it does outline pretty much the whole process of potty training. It gets a wee bit long but it’s a great book for sharing with your child to help them with this transition.

We did another fun song with the felt undies I made:

Five Pairs of underwear hanging on the line
Everything is good and everything Is fine
Along come a breeze and it blows one Free
Uh oh, (toss one) it just landed in a tree!

(Repeat the rhyme until all the underwear are in the tree)

(Adapted from Gordon Avenue Library of Jefferson-Madison Regional Library)

We sang Shake Your Sillies Out and then watched a YouTube playlist that I created. I screened a lot of different potty training videos for showing at storytime, but none were as short and sweet as the Sesame Street songs I was already familiar with. So I made a video playlist out of them. I had some tech issues with the laptop that was supposed to be set up for this purpose, and had to use my own iPad in the end. The sound quality wasn’t great, but at least I was able to share these videos. I really love Sesame Street’s intelligent adaptations of good music for a good cause!

Potty songs are really helpful for making potty training fun. Here are some really silly ones I found online:

The Potty Song by Miss Scherling:

Matt Neese’s Potty Song:

Pee pee wee wee poopy in the potty (4x)
C’mon baby, you can do it
Squat on the pot ain’t nothing to it! (2x)
Lose that diaper and the baby wiper
Poo in the loo and fire like a sniper!
Clap for 8 beats, then start Psshhhhh… 3 x and then Flush!

Can’t believe next week is my last Tuesday with all of you! It went so fast!!

AnnMarie Kolakowski

I'm a youth services librarian currently working at the Lamanda Park Branch Library while Central Library is closed for seismic repairs. I purchase juvenile fiction for grades 2-8, and some foreign languages. I do a lot of programs with school-age kids, including 3 regular book clubs (Windows and Mirrors, Read Around the World, and Lucha Libros), as well as writing workshops and STEAM/science programs. I also Infant/Toddler Storytimes and Preschool Storytimes, and outreach to local area preschools. I love what I do, working with kids of all ages to inspire them to learn and use their curiosity and imaginations. Outside of my work at the library, I am also the author of a book on creative writing activities for kids.

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