1 Keep the door open. This is comforting for children who are afraid to be alone, and it also makes supervision easier. For safety's sake, remove the locks.

2 Make sure bathroom areas are cheerful. Provide a welcoming atmosphere by hanging attractive posters at children's eye level. Make sure there's adequate lighting so youngsters won't feel hesitant about entering the room and staying on their own.

3 Keep supplies easy to reach. Put the toilet tissue holder, paper towel dispenser, and liquid soap pump within children's reach. Of course, toilets and sinks should be child-size and close to the floor.

4 Ensure that clothing isn't a problem. Encourage parents to dress children in clothes that have easy-to-undo buttons, snaps, and buckles. Struggle-free apparel allows kids to be as independent as possible.

5 Pick up on children's prompts. As you know, children have individual ways of referring to their need to go to the toilet, as well as individual physical clues. Tune in so you can recognize and help children realize that there's an urgency to get to the bathroom.

6 Don't rush the process. Support children's efforts with a calm, stress-free atmosphere and a flexible schedule. Remember, some children need lots of time to be successful.

7 Be prepared! Ask parents to send in extra training pants and/or a change of clothes. Have self-sealing plastic bags on hand to send wet items home and keep a reserve of clean unisex elastic-waist sweatpants.

8 Model and teach hand washing. Show children how to wash their hands and also post an easy-to-follow picture chart at the sinks. Together, make up a little song children can sing that includes all the steps for healthy hand washing.

If you are diapering children

9 Be careful. Make sure sanitizing solutions, dirty-diaper storage pails, and supplies removed from individual diaper bags are kept out of children's reach. Never leave children unattended.

10 Create a cozy space. Hang unbreakable mirrors and mobiles. Offer washable toys to play with. Keep your voice friendly.