Too Much Bathroom time

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by McKennaL, Oct 8, 2009.

  1. McKennaL

    McKennaL Groupie

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    Oct 8, 2009

    Doing a maternity leave...this is NOT my normal age group...so somethings are BRAND new to me.

    Little girl went to the bathroom 3 times in the 2.25 hours we have. First time - she came out no problem. second time she was inthere so long. we wondered how we could have counted wrong with the milk and snack. Then she comes out when 95% have finished snack and gone on to free choice. (Do you GIVE her snack and milk at that point? - We did..but needing to move on, she was rushed to finish.) Lining up at the end of the day, she asks can she go to the bathroom... I hesitated, but that's ALL i need to hear that she had an accident on the way home...so i said yes. But she took about 10 minutes (she'd locked the door - so I couldn't open it to check. Need to get me a key!) and therefore we were all late getting to the door.

    This can't happen again.

    How would you, experienced teachers, handle this?
     
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  3. McKennaL

    McKennaL Groupie

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    Oct 8, 2009

    Oh... I should say... she was NOT sick, and we weren't told that she has "elimination" problems.

    I think the second time at least she was playing in the sink...but the third time...at least the toilet flushed.

    Is having an in-room toilet (and a 'if you have to go, go' policy) just too much of an invitation for dawdlers??
     
  4. SpecialPreskoo

    SpecialPreskoo Moderator

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    Oct 8, 2009

    If she was playing that 2nd time (snack time) then when she came back, I would have let her had her snack but when time was up, snack would have been taken up.

    Next time, give her a notice before time to go (about 10 mins. before hand) so she can get it done and not make you late. If she said no then changes her mind last min., I wouldn't let her go. That just my 2 cents.
     
  5. mandagap06

    mandagap06 Devotee

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    Oct 8, 2009

    what age group is this? Or more less what grade?
     
  6. McKennaL

    McKennaL Groupie

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    She's very little...(we have a 3-5yr old mixed class)... but she speaks very well, so i think she's 4 years old.
     
  7. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Oct 8, 2009

    Yep, if you "choose" to use snack and freeplay time in the restroom "playing" you don't get any extra time. You see your snack, but you are done when class is.

    If everyone else was late for dismissal I think I would have to say "we have to meet the parents" and have the parent go to restroom with child. If not in your classroom then another in your area?

    When I pick up my own daughter from K she is often deciding she has to "go" - I have to walk up a full flight of outside steps, cross a lobby and go to restroom in church (turning on and off lights) down a long hall. I am sure your mom will be annoyed-but you could say "I couldn't make the class late, but she decided she has to use the restroom right before we were heading out." Say some other mom needs the kids outside so that they can hurry out........
     
  8. Mrs_Barrett

    Mrs_Barrett Cohort

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    Oct 9, 2009

    We have a bathroom in our room. I don't have any issues with using it repeatedly throughout the day. One thing that we don't let them do is lock the door. That is a rule, because we have a back room where we need to get into throughout the day. Plus I honestly don't think a 3,4,5 year old needs that much privacy because so many of them need assistance.
     
  9. teacherR

    teacherR Companion

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    Oct 9, 2009

    I teach 3,4, and 5 year olds. The younger ones love the bathroom and will hang out if I let them. If she can hear you through the door I would probably ask her what the hold up is and if she needs help. If she does not I start the count down from 5. I usually explain that if they are not prompt they will miss snack or outside time and that fixes the problem. I also tell them that if they cannot be responsible then they may not lock the door.

    Maybe it is just me but some of my kids are so slow in the bathroom it drives me crazy. It is just a new skill and it takes them time.
     
  10. ScooterJen

    ScooterJen Rookie

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    Oct 9, 2009

    I think it is really important to remember that this is only a 4 year old girl! Food time should not be used as a punishment in my opinion. If she wants to sit and eat while the other students are playing, then shouldn't that be her choice? I can't think of too many students who would rather eat than go play at centers. Also, students should not be denied access to the bathroom. These students are just really learning how to control their bathroom habits.
    I think it is a good idea not to allow your students to lock the door. When she asks to go to the bathroom, remind her that she must be quick and come back out. We always say the bathroom is to use for washing our hands and using the toilet and nothing else, including play. Give her a time limit if you think this will help. Do you have an assistant? It would help to send an assistant in there with her to remind her of the rules and hurry her a long a bit until she understands.
    Also, give her warnings before you are going anywhere. It sounds like this student could use a lot of direct instruction. Walk up to her and tell her. "We have ten minutes before class is over. If you need the bathroom, you must use it now."
    Are students required to participate in snack? Maybe she needs something more stimulating, another option. There has to be a reason why she rather be sitting on the toilet all by herself instead of sitting with her friends chatting during snack.
     
  11. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    Oct 9, 2009

    McKenna-

    Welcome to Pre-K :D I've had my fill of Poopoo and Peepee issues this year.

    CA regulations dictate a most of our bathroom policy. First, a bathroom must be available to our children at all times. We have a bathroom in our classroom and another on the playground. They can go as often as they need to during our 3 hour day. I agree with that regulation. It's funny, we have a handful of children that use the bathroom at the exact same time every day. We also have a few that will go 2 or 3 times a day. When they have to go....they have to go NOW.

    Second, our children must be in our sight at all times. That means no closed bathroom door. This regulation feels a little creepy to me, but I see the point. I have an Aide in my classroom. Either I or the Aide walks to the bathroom with the child and stands outside the door with the door cracked. I installed mirrors in the bathroom (even more creepy) which allows us to see the children with the door cracked. It gives them privacy and keeps us in compliance. It also eliminates them playing around in there. If you have an Aide, have her stand by a cracked open door and prompt her if needed. You can also have the Aide stay behind with the girl while you take the others so they are not late.

    I agree with ScooterJen. If you can, offer the snack to the girl. She can either eat or go to Centers. When its time to move on, move on. Either way, the girl experiences a natural consequence from playing in the bathroom. My class goes to the playground after snack. I had a boy playing in the bathroom today for 15 minutes during snack. I watched and prompted him several times. As a result he only had 15 minutes and did not finish his snack.

    If you find this girl needs to use the bathroom often or at the same time every day, make accommodations and prompt her to go before you need to take the class to another location.
     
  12. McKennaL

    McKennaL Groupie

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    Oct 9, 2009

    The more I think about this... the more I am not happy about how the second bathroom break went down.

    Let me explain... This was the first day that i was on my own leading the class (the mentor teacher took a sick day to go to the doctor)...we got a new aide in the class that Monday - this was Wednesday - and the aide was very concerned about getting the milk out, on time, for snack (the timing had been a large problem in the past...and especially her first two days. We had come up with a plan that would eliviate the problem, but she was totally focused on the milk alone). I was getting the kids hands clean, them seated, the napkins out, and the snacks out.

    NEITHER the aide nor I KNEW the little girl was in the bathroom...and when the milk count came out wrong we didn't put two and two together that one child was missing. Not until she popped up.

    ***

    I know, this sounds like TOTAL incompetence...and the more I think on it..the more I am bothered by the WHOLE thing. THANK GOD, she was in the bathroom, not left outside..or wandered off. Thank God nothing happened to her in the bathroom. Thinking about ALL of this makes the fact she was rushed through snack seem like barely a speck.

    The more I think about it... the more I bash myself for losing track of one child.
     
  13. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    Oct 9, 2009

    Don't bash yourself. I've lost track of a kid. Neither you nor I are incompetent. It happend. The girl is safe. You learned. :hugs:
     
  14. TeacherGrl7

    TeacherGrl7 Devotee

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    Oct 10, 2009

    These things happen. Be grateful that nothing happened, and move on from it. In my classroom, the bathroom is available at all times, but the rule is that you MUST tell me or my assistant before you go. I teach them how to sign "bathroom" in sign language, so telling me is as simple as waving a fist in my direction.

    With that said, if I have a child that I think is abusing the bathroom, I speak to them about using the bathroom for going, and how important it is to be on the carpet/having snack/doing centers with the other children. If it does not change, I contact parents just to make them aware, and ask if the frequent use of the bathroom is normal. Sometimes they tell me that the child DOES tend to go often, even if there is not an actual problem. Sometimes they say that it is an anomaly, and then I enlist their help in stopping the issue.

    If it continues, I would bring it up to her parents just as an FYI. "I just wanted you to be aware that Suzie is going to the bathroom frequently in class. I wanted to touch base with you to see if this was happening at home as well." See what they say.
     
  15. Miller59

    Miller59 Companion

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    Oct 11, 2009

    HOw far away is the bathroom? I've had kids have to go alot and I've had kids who WANT to go alot. You will just have to pay attention and try to discern what's making her tick.

    I would stress to her that she may not ever leave the room without permission and she may not ever lock the door. There are so many reasons for this and it is just non-negotiable.

    If she continues to ask for the potty a lot, you try to put her off. "Yes you can go potty, but first I'd like you to do this puzzle with me." If she has to really go you'll know that. You'll also know if she's just messing around. Even if she is just messing around you probably want to not make too big a deal of it. Let he know that she's missing out on some great play time by being in the potty so much, but if you push her she may dig in her heals and then it'll be a bigger issue.

    Ahh -- the fine balance of push and pull with a pre-k'er!
     
  16. TeacherGrl7

    TeacherGrl7 Devotee

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    I don't understand why bathrooms for pre-kers HAVE locks on them. Who designed this? Whose bright idea was it to give a 4 year old the option to LOCK him/herself into a bathroom in school? Is there a way that you can disable the lock? Maybe you can put a piece of tape across the little thingie that clicks from the door to the frame (my technical term LoL) so that it can close over but can just be pushed open. That would solve one problem.

    Dzenna, watching a child go to the bathroom is creepy to me, too. I'm glad that we don't have to do it. I understand the logic behind it, but it seems over the top to me. I'm surprised parents don't complain about it- I would imagine many of them would be uncomfortable with another adult watching their child go to the bathroom. I know in my class, I spend a lot of time reminding children to CLOSE the door haha.
     
  17. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    I explain our licensing requirements at Back to School night so the parents know our State requirements. I'm sure some think it's creepy that we stand there, but know the reason behind it and its standard practice in CA.

    We have our share of children leaving the door wide open and a lot of "singers". They sing at the top of their lungs while they are in there. :lol:
     
  18. TeacherGrl7

    TeacherGrl7 Devotee

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    Oct 12, 2009

    I have those too!! And a small classroom, so I have to constantly remind them that we can hear them outside of the bathroom LoL. It's so cute that they still think that as long as nobody can see them, nobody can hear them either.
     
  19. sarzacsmom

    sarzacsmom Groupie

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    Oct 14, 2009

    many of our parents wouldn't be creeped out by it--they've actually asked us to check the "stool sample" after and to check bottoms so they don't get any "tire tracks"---or to wipe for them--my kiddos are 4 almost 5 and no special needs!
     

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