[~12 months of age on]
As with most new experiences, toilet training is no exception. Language is involved!!
Ideally as soon as your baby is paying some attention at nappy change time (this could be well before they are 12 months), start saying ‘poo’ each time you catch them doing one and whilst you change their nappy. During all of this, start signing ‘toilet’. http://auslan.org.au/dictionary/words/toilet-3.html
The reason only ‘toilet’ is signed is to make it VERY SIMPLE for your child to tell you they need to go to the toilet. Whilst they are developing their skills at recognising ‘I need to go to the toilet’ signs and telling you with their ‘sign’, you can still be pointing out ‘wee’ and ‘poo’ so they are learning the meaning of the words as you go along. But for the purpose of toilet training, it’s more important to get them to the toilet than make them tell you what they need to do. Thinking forwards, you will be hoping when your child needs to do a poo or wee down the track, they might sign ‘toilet’ to you!
Don’t forget the potty. Obviously it is harder to see when your child is doing a wee but you can start by putting them on the potty before a bath and if they HAPPEN to do a wee, you would be saying ‘wee, wee, wee!’ and again signing ‘toilet’. And clapping!
And as soon as your baby or toddler is interested in watching you or daddy or other siblings on the toilet, start pointing at the toilet and signing ‘toilet’. Your aim is to use the words ‘potty’, ‘toilet’, ‘poo’ and ‘wee’ and always be signing ‘toilet’. This is all done well before actual toilet training time comes, with no pressure, but just simply teaching the connection between the physical sensations and the language that goes with it.
Then, by the time you are ready to throw out the nappies, your child will be so much further ahead as you could have been talking to them about it for over six months 😉