While there will always be children who are not yet ready to be fully toilet trained before school, a growing incidence of children with toilet training issues does effect the ability of a teacher to focus on literacy and numeracy, when they need to manage children’s pull ups or clothing changes.
Children often have a few accidents in the first year of school and beyond. Teaching them to take off their soiled clothes and putting on fresh clothes is an important skill if your child has toilet issues.
A study I did with New Entrant teachers several years back highlighted the following for must have self management skills before five:
- Toilet themselves independently
- Wash their hands, turning the taps on and off
- Blow their own nose with a tissue
- Regulate whether they need a jersey or a hat
- Unpack their own bag
- Put away their own possessions
- Put on their shoes and socks
Being able to approach adults, resolve conflict positively and self direct their own learning also skills the new entrant teach needs to focus on in the fist year.
The less time teachers need to spend supporting each child who has not mastered these skills, the more time they can spend on learning more structured lessons such as reading and mathematics.
“If they can look after themselves, I can look after their learning” Angela, teacher