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Diapers in Kindergarten

Windeln im Kindergarten

Photo by @oliviafarjo

 

If your child will be starting kindergarten in September but still wears a diaper, it should not be a problem. But which diapers are suitable for daycare? Are educators allowed to refuse to change diapers? And how often are diapers changed in kindergarten? We have gathered all this important information for you.

Which diapers are suitable for kindergarten? Cloth diapers are suitable for daycare, especially All-In-One diapers, All-In-Two diapers, and Judes cloth diapers.

In this article, you will learn all the information about diapering in daycare. Additionally, we will give you important tips on how you and your child can prepare for diaper changing time in kindergarten.

Can a Child Attend Kindergarten in Diapers?

The short answer is: Yes, your child can attend kindergarten in diapers, as every child is entitled to a daycare spot upon reaching three years of age.

And here’s the longer answer:

Your child is entitled to daycare services from a kindergarten or home-based daycare provider, regardless of whether they are potty trained. However, your child can still be rejected by the daycare, as this legal entitlement is not binding for individual facilities. Each daycare sets its own admission requirements.

This means that while your child must definitely be provided with a daycare place, it may not be the facility of your choice.

Are Diapers Changed in Kindergarten?

If the kindergarten accepts your child with the knowledge that they are not yet potty trained, they must be diapered. Even if your child no longer wears diapers but occasionally has an accident, they of course have the right to be changed.

Changing and diapering must also take place in a secluded area, as even toddlers have a right to privacy.

Judes Baby walking over wooden ramp Diapers in Kindergarten

Photo by @isabelplett

Who Is Allowed to Change My Child?

Initially, all educators are permitted to change your child. However, ultimately your child should have the option to decide who is allowed to change them. The child's wellbeing is of the utmost importance, and before your child is changed by someone other than the parents, a relationship with that person should be established.

How Can We Establish Diaper Changing in Kindergarten?

For your child to feel comfortable with diaper changing, they need to get accustomed to the new environment and build trust with the educators. Your child should be changed only by caregivers and this doesn't happen overnight.

To familiarize your child with the new setting, you (or the other parent) should initially change your child alone in the designated changing area. Next, the educator can join to observe the changing routine. Do you have any special diaper changing rituals? Make sure to share them with the educators.

Perhaps the educator may assist the next time by handing over wet wipes, diapers, etc., or closing the diaper.

Only after this trust has been gradually built and your child agrees, should the educator be allowed to change your child.

How Often Should Diapers Be Changed in Kindergarten?

Even in kindergarten, diapers should be changed at least every three to four hours. If there is a bowel movement, the diaper must be changed immediately.

In kindergarten, a full diaper may occasionally go unnoticed. In preparation for daycare, you could (if not already done) arrange with your child that they always let someone know when the diaper is full. Establish a word or a signal for this and communicate it to the educators. This way, your child doesn’t have to walk around with a full diaper any longer than necessary.

What to Do If Educators Do Not Change Diapers Regularly?

Even though it shouldn't be the case, in some daycare centers it may happen that educators change diapers too late, not regularly, or only in the case of bowel movements. This naturally has negative effects on your child’s wellbeing and can lead to diaper dermatitis.

It’s important to find a quick solution to the problem. Therefore, you should definitely talk to the educators. Also, remind your child to always let someone know (using a word or signal) if the diaper is full. However, the responsibility lies with the adults.

If discussions don't lead to a solution, you should also talk to the other parents and perhaps seek another group meeting with the kindergarten management.

If that doesn't help, you should reach out to the sponsor of the facility. If even that doesn’t lead to success, parents can turn to the responsible local supervisory authority.

 

Which Diapers for Kindergarten?

Daycare diapers should certainly meet the following criteria: 

The Daycare Diaper Must Be Leak-Proof

The diaper should be able to absorb urine for several hours without leaking.

The Daycare Diaper Should Be Comfortable

Your child should feel comfortable and be able to move well in the diaper all day without it shifting. Make sure it is the right size. It shouldn't be too tight but also shouldn't slip.

The Daycare Diaper Should Be Easy to Use

Educators are likely to change many diapers throughout the day. Time is often limited in daycares. Therefore, the diaper should be as quick and simple to put on as possible. Make sure you choose the simplest diaper or cloth diaper option for daycare.

Are Cloth Diapers Allowed in Daycare?

Yes, cloth diapers are just as permissible in daycare and can often be just as easy to use as disposable diapers.

Just make sure that the cloth diaper meets the above-mentioned criteria and explain in advance how the cloth diaper system works.

These Cloth Diapers are Suitable for Daycare

There are several suitable cloth diaper systems that are appropriate for daycare use. These include:

All-In-One Diapers (AIO)

All-In-One diapers have the waterproof outer layer and absorbent layer sewn together.

Diapering effort: Diapering here is very straightforward → lay the child on the diaper and close it, tuck the gussets into the leg crease

All-In-Two Diapers (AI2)

In All-In-Two diapers, the cover and absorbent layers are not sewn together. The absorbent layer is either snapped into the diaper or laid into the flaps.

Diapering effort: Diapering here is very straightforward → lay the child on the diaper and close it, tuck the gussets into the leg crease

Judes Cloth Diapers

A Judes diaper consists of two combinable parts, the absorbent material (inner diaper) and a waterproof cover (outer diaper). Thanks to the special weave, the cotton is particularly absorbent and yet the diaper is still very slim.

Diapering effort: Diapering here is very straightforward → place the inner diaper and possibly Poo Paper (for catching bowel movements) inside the outer diaper. Lay the diaper under the baby's bottom and close it with the Velcro.

By the way: Judes are not only great as daycare diapers, but in combination with our Booster they are also optimal as overnight diapers. This makes them a perfect all-rounder, and you don't have to buy separate daycare or overnight diapers.

Judes Baby walking with pull toy books on wall Diapers in Kindergarten

Photo by @isabelplett

Preparing for Diaper Changing in Kindergarten

To equip your child as best as possible for diaper changing in kindergarten, you can prepare together for everyday daycare life in advance:

  • As already mentioned, you can practice with your child to let you know as soon as they have a bowel movement in their diaper. For this, decide on a specific word or signal that your child can use in daycare.
  • It's best to find out in advance about the diaper changing situation and possibly ask to see the changing area during a parent-teacher night. This way, you can explain to your child beforehand what to expect.
  • If your child is to be changed with different diapers in daycare than at home, be sure to get them used to the new diapers well in advance.
  • In kindergarten, children are often changed while standing up. You can also practice this at home beforehand.

Tips for Diaper Changing While Standing

There are a few hacks that can make diaper changing while standing much easier for you and your baby, which we've tested and summarized for you here:

  1. Stability support: To change your child while they’re standing, you need both hands and preferably some support from your knees and thighs. Thus, your baby needs a secure stance. This works best if they can hold onto something, like the back of a couch or a chair.
  2. Distractions: A chair and couch not only serve as useful supports for standing, but also as a distraction tray! Here, you can place objects for your baby to occupy themselves with.
  3. Full body engagement: If you squat behind your baby to apply the diaper, it's very helpful to use a knee or thigh to keep the back part of the diaper against the baby's bottom. This leaves your hands free to fasten the velcro at the front.
  4. Switching sides: Speaking of velcro: It’s really advantageous when changing diapers while standing! This way, you can quickly fasten the diaper first on one side and then the other, ensuring the diaper stays put. Then you can adjust it until it fits properly.
  5. Teamwork: Especially older children can wonderfully assist with standing diaper changes – that keeps them occupied and distracted from wiggling. They can, for example, hold the front flaps of the diaper while you secure the back part to their bottom.

How Many Diapers for Kindergarten?

In daycares, diapers are usually changed every three to four hours.

For the morning, you should plan on two to three diapers (including the one put on at home). For full-day care, you will need a total of about six to seven diapers.

What Diapering Accessories Are Needed for Daycare?

  • Two diaper bags → One bag for clean diapers and one for used diapers
  • Three to six diapers per day (possibly plus one or two extra diapers as a buffer)
    • Poo Paper
    • Booster → If you're concerned that diapers may not be changed often enough, you can increase absorbency with a booster
    • Washcloths or wet wipes
    • Change of clothes → in case a diaper leaks

    Judes small diaper bag outer diapers inner diapers washcloths accessories Diapers in Kindergarten

    Diaper-Free in Kindergarten

    When Should a Child No Longer Wear Diapers?

    There is no set period of time it takes for a child to be potty trained. Every child is individual, and every process of weaning off diapers is different. Some children are completely potty trained by 2 years old, while others may not be until 5 years old, and both are perfectly normal.

    → Our specially conducted study shows: Children who were diapered with cloth diapers became diaper-free about 8 months earlier than children who were diapered with disposable diapers.

    When Can a Child Go to Kindergarten Without a Diaper?

    If you are in the process of potty training and it's going quite well at home, the question arises: When can I send my child to kindergarten without a diaper?

    As always, the desire of your child should come first. Simply ask your child if they feel ready to go to daycare without a diaper. Explain that it's okay to change their mind again and that it's not a big deal if there's an accident.

    Discuss with the educators how the potty training process will work in the facility and just try out what works best for your child. The most important thing is: Everything should happen without pressure.

    Definitely remember to provide enough change of clothes for your child.

    Why Isn't My Child Potty Trained at Daycare?

    It's quite possible that your child is already (mostly) potty trained at home but still has "accidents" at daycare and just isn't ready to go without diapers there.

    The atmosphere in kindergarten is different from home, and often children are also too distracted to recognize when they need to go. Remember that every child is different and there isn't a fixed time for being fully potty trained.

    Discuss your concerns with the educators. They are likely to have a lot of experience in this area and can provide reassurance.

    Judes Cloth Diapers Aid in Potty Training

    Did you know that Judes diapers can help your child become potty trained sooner? When you diaper your child with cloth diapers, they feel immediately when they wet the diaper, providing a natural bio-feedback. This immediate action-result sequence helps even a baby recognize this "if-then" connection and develop (subconscious) understanding.

    This understanding benefits your child during the weaning off diapers process, as they are already familiar with their body's signals.

    That's why we at Judes designed our cloth diapers specifically to let your baby feel when they are wet from urinating in the diaper, helping them learn this important connection.

    For more information on becoming potty trained, you can find it here.

    Toileting Refusal Syndrome

    You should not ignore your child's signals, of course. If your child was mostly potty trained and suddenly starts refusing to go to the toilet and prefers diapers again, it could be a case of Toileting Refusal Syndrome.

    Definition: The toddler refuses to sit on the toilet for bowel movements for longer than a month and prefers to use a diaper instead.

    Toileting Refusal Syndrome may have physical causes such as constipation or develop from a fear. If suspected, definitely speak to your pediatrician to clarify the cause.

    It is important to understand that there is no malicious intent behind this refusal and that pressure will not lead to a solution.

    I hope this article has answered all your questions about diaper changing in kindergarten and helped you choose the right daycare diaper. For more tips on cloth diapers, feel free to follow us on Instagram.

    Judes Baby looking at a book Diapers in Kindergarten

    Additional Questions and Interesting Facts

    When to Start Toilet Training?

    Research suggests that the ideal time to start toilet training for most children is between 22 and 30 months. However, every child is different, and you should primarily look for signs of readiness in your child:

    • Your child can sit up independently and steadily
    • Your child can walk (to the toilet)
    • Your child imitates your behavior
    • Your child notices/signals (with words or gestures) that their diaper is dirty and wants to be changed
    • Your child stays dry for longer periods (around 2 hours)
    • Your child feels discomfort with soiled diapers
    • Your child shows interest in the toilet and using the toilet
    • Your child can follow simple instructions

    When Is a Child Considered Potty Trained?

    Some say a child is potty trained when there's only one "accident" per week and they can otherwise go to the toilet independently. According to Elternkompass, a child is considered potty trained when there are more successful trips to the toilet than "accidents."

     

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