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You Can Go To The Potty: Book Review

"You Can Go To The Potty," by Dr. William Sears, Martha Sears and Christie Watts Kelly (Little, Brown And Company, 2002, 32 pages. Ages: 2-3. Hardcover, $12.95.) Child development experts Dr. William and Martha Sears offer this step-by-step guide for young children learning how to use the toilet. The transition from diapers to toilet is an exciting time for kids, and for parents, but it can also be frustrating for some families. This book explains the process in language young children can understand and reassures kids and parents alike that some day they will be clean and dry all the time.

A note to parents and caregivers reminds them about the importance of "attachment parenting," where parents anticipate and respond appropriately to their child's developmental needs. Furthermore, the narrative builds on this idea, explaining to kids that when they were babies their parents took care of their every need and now they are growing older and can start doing some things for themselves. At the same time, it reassures them that Mommy and Daddy will still be there to instruct, guide and help them become self-sufficient in the bathroom.

The authors also help parents figure out when a child is ready to learn about the potty, note that the process is longer for some children than others, give practical advice about wiping and foot stools and tell parents not to get angry if urine falls on the floor. "Just as you would never punish a child learning to walk for falling down, you should never punish your child for any aspect of learning to use the potty."

In sum, the book gives practical tips to make the process a natural and stress-free one, so children can anticipate the day they get to wear "big-kid underpants." A free poster helps make it fun ("Hooray! You did it!")





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