I was shocked to hear a primary teacher on Channel 4 News last month (Dec 2015) say that 35% of children started reception wearing nappies. Now I know it’s not a race and children are ready at different times but any experienced health visitor will tell you about ‘windows of opportunity.’ The first is usually around 18 months.
If you don’t see the signs and do nothing your child’s interest dies off and you need to wait for the next ‘window.’ Trust me, I know from experience.
For some reason this knowledge about ‘windows of opportunity’ went out of fashion and we were all told our children would potty train themselves around 3 years old. It may happen, but the chances are very low, hence the rise in children starting school in nappies. Very poor information spread (wishful thinking, if you like) and we’re reaping the costs now.
You should also be warned that children can get used to pooing in a nappy standing up and then find doing it sitting down over a hole (potty or toilet) can become frightening for a child after two years of age. So, get them interested and experienced at doing it on a pot from about a year. It will makes life easier for you and your child in the long run.
Whatever you do, don’t put it off. Once your child is taking him/herself to the toilet it makes life so much easier. It’s really worth putting in a bit of effort in the early days.