Do you have a little one learning to use the potty? Or maybe just starting to wonder about it?
Do you have one that’s “trained” — but still so deep in the important business of PLAY that they don’t always make it to the toilet in time?
Did you know, “potty books” aren’t just for two year olds? Learning to listen to your body’s needs doesn’t happen all at once. Picture books can be both perfect inspiration for new trainees and fun reminders for preschoolers and kindergarteners too (and really anyone who enjoys poo humor.) Because if you can make using the potty a little bit FUN, you’re halfway there!
Top Ten Potty Books
1. (On My) Potty by Leslie Patricelli
This is a pitch-perfect toilet training book aimed at kids rather than parents. Leslie Patricelli follows the inner dialogue and hilarious actions of the baby (guaranteed to have your toddler and even you shouting out responses and joining in and cheering, “I did it!”). The simple text, bright acrylic illustrations, and everyday situations, all engage and encourage toddlers to go to the you-know-what.
2. I Want My Potty (Little Princess) by Tony Ross
This one brings such a brilliant sense of humour to potty training. ‘“Nappies are YUUECH!” said the little princess. “There must be something better!”’ At first the Little Princess thinks the royal potty is even worse than nappies but she soon learns to love it – even if it isn’t always there just when she needs it! It’s a great read in its own right – and the fact that children are also getting potty trained at the same time makes it a winner (and my favourite).
3. The Potty Book for Girls and The Potty Book for Boys by Alyssa Satin Capucilli (Author), Dorothy Stott (Illustrator)
The story of a little one who wants to go out to play, but never can – not until she has her nappy changed first. One day, a big box arrives. What could be inside? Is it a teddy? A rocking chair? No. Of course it’s a potty. Which means it’s time for her to learn how to use it. Sweet illustrations and simple text gently lead toddlers through the process.
4. Once Upon a Potty by Alona Frankel
This classic potty training book tells the story of how a little one first learned how to use a potty. Filled with bright graphics and clear, age-appropriate language, the book guides the toddler, along with the (anatomically correct) hero, step by step towards the potty. Will help get your toddler through this milestone, too. (Comes in two versions, one for girls, and one for boys)
5. Pirate Pete’s and Princess Polly’s Potty Book: Potty Training for Boys and Girls by Andrea Pinnington
These books are the perfect partners to parents who are struggling with potty training. They tackle the common anxieties children may encounter using the potty. Each page encourages parents and children to join in and interact with the story by pressing the “cheer” sound effect whenever the child has interacted correctly – eventually (hopefully) motivating the child to use the potty.
6. Everyone Poops by Taro Gomi
This hilarious book will be a big hit with any toddler. It shows all kinds of different animals needing to go – and (yes) their poo, too. In a simple, factual and light-hearted way without being crass, the book helps the child sees that it is OK. He or she is not alone. Everyone has to go. A fun read that also helps your child get used to going on a potty.
7. Nappy Duck and Potty Piggy by Bernette Ford, illustrated by Sam Williams
A happy, read-aloud story to help transition your child from nappy to potty. The adorable characters and very simple text are ideal for toddlers. Ducky wants Piggy to come out and play. But Piggy can’t – he is on the potty. How can Ducky become as grown-up as Piggy?
8. Who’s In The Loo? by Jeanne Willis, illustrated by Adrian Reynolds
“There’s a very long queue. Is it an elephant having a poo?” If your house has many occupants, then this witty rhyme will resonate. The exuberant illustrations add to the fun.
9. Sam’s Potty by Barbro Lindgren, illustrated by Eva Eriksson
A headstrong little boy knows what he wants – and it’s definitely not his potty. But in the end, he learns to be proud of his new potty. With minimal and simple text and illustrations, written in the voice of a toddler, this book will make your littlest ones laugh and at the same time learn.
10. On Your Potty by Virginia Miller
Ba the bear does not want to use his potty. To the question: “Do you need your potty, Ba?” He says “Nah, nah, nah, nah, nah, NAH.” Children will giggle and join in repeating Nah – and at the same time, be encouraged to try their potties too. This book addresses toilet training in a playful, non-threatening way, with a brief story, gentle humour and charming illustrations.
Oops– Can’t stop there! Two more potty books that I can’t leave off the list– one as straightforward as it gets and the other as silly as it gets!
11. Going to the Potty by Mr. Fred Rogers
“Going to the Potty handles a sensitive subject with the same quiet candor and respect for young audiences that are the hallmark of his Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood TV show.” –Publishers Weekly
12. Skip to the Loo! A Potty Book by Sally Lloyd Jones, illustrated by Anita Jeram
“It is impossible to imagine a story with more gaiety on the unpromising theme of trying to encourage untrained toddlers in the right direction than Skip to the Loo, My Darling by Sally Lloyd-Jones… Essential reading for all potty trainees.” –The Guardian
Originally published over at The Guardian.