Saturday, September 22, 2012

Chamber Pots and Such


One thing my students need to work for the SoLs is their knowledge of idioms. It sounds odd that this is necessary for performing in society outside the classroom, but if that is what the state says to focus on in the curriculum, I will do as such - At least, until we know what the test looks like and how it is formatted. Ironically enough, as we're reading a two-act play by August Wilson called "Fences," an idiom pops up.

"I didn't have a pot to piss in or a window to throw it out of." Roughly paraphrased - I asked my students what that meant, and they stared at me, dumbstruck. After briefly explaining what a chamber pot is and how it was used, the lightbulbs (and some "ew!"s) made themselves known, and happily, my students were able to explain the idiom in context.

I found that really quite amusing because, in essence, any parent of young children has a chamber pot somewhere in his or her house. And while the use of such isn't for quite the same reason, it can still draw 'ew's. I know I am no different than any other parent in my eagerness for potty training, but I beg forgiveness as I share my tale of Stubborn 101.

Syd is ready. In every possible way. His teacher agrees that the only thing holding him back is... him. I had lengthy conversations with my sister this past summer, trying to figure out how to start down the long, eagerly anticipated path of potty training. We started as soon as school was out, but he defied every attempt of mine to sit on the potty, so I didn't see the point in letting him run around naked or with big boy pants on. 

Weeks went by. I would try every other week and he would break into hysterics. Finally, after pleading, bribing, demonstrating, he agreed to sit on it. Sit. Only. It was a start, so I took it. That continued for a few weeks before abruptly stopping.

Finally, exasperated by attempts at school and at home (though, we did have a few more successes at school - he at least traded in his diapers for big boy pants over a pull-up!), I saw a Chuck Truck Fire Station toy at the grocery store that was marked down. I bought it, suspended it from the shower curtain rod, and while he bathed, told him only boys who go potty on the potty get toys like that. He looked me dead in the eye, said ok, sat down on the potty, and went. Then, he stood up and asked for his toy. 

My jaw hit the floor. It really is just him holding him back. Stickers, candy, books we only read while sitting on the potty wouldn't do it. Chuck Truck would. The next morning, I told him it was time to sit on the potty, and he waved me off - "No, thank you!" then ran down the hall.

I'm hoping the dam has broken. I'm hoping this will lead to more attempts and successes at the potty. I'm hoping my "Year of the Taurus" son realizes everyone else goes on the potty and wants to follow suit. And though I enjoy the huge boxes our diapers come in (they're very handy for moving school books and storage), I'm ready for a grocery list that is slightly shorter - sans the diapers and wipes.

1 comment:

  1. c'mon Syd, you can do it! I just sent him a birthday present. Maybe you can suspend that from the shower curtain rod as well! Hang in there, Dionne!! xoxoxo