As part of my ‘Sleep Week‘ we are focusing on bedtime routines today on my blog.
I’ve already admitted this week (see my post here) that I’m definitely not an expert at getting children to go to sleep or even stay asleep for that matter! But I am a believer in routines. For a lot of children (and parents!!) having a bedtime routine helps to make going to bed more enjoyable, easier and less stressful.
Our routine usually consists of supper/milk, bath, teeth brushing, book then bed. We also try to maintain this routine when we are away, to help settle our kids into new environments.
One of my best friends (and fellow sleep deprived mum!) shared with me her genius idea to help her little girl understand their bedtime routine..and go to bed easier.
Using card, felt tips, stickers and glue-they made a routine sticker reward chart together of their bedtime routine…
..and put it up in her bedroom to refer to every night. Their routine is bath, pajamas, book, milk then bed.
And…it worked! Most of the time, she now finds bedtimes a lot easier and goes to bed earlier.
Again, I’m not claiming this to be the answer to everyone’s sleep problems- every child is different and what works for one doesn’t necessarily work for another but for her little one..it worked.
So why do I think it worked for her?
- By making the chart together, her daughter had ownership of the routine and ‘believed’ she had control of what they were doing before bed-instead of bedtime being something forced on her.
- She was also proud of what they created and enjoyed getting the reward of stickers- making bedtime fun! (See my thoughts of the importance of rewards here)
- She could relax knowing what to expect at bedtime. Their routine would be consistent and the boundaries were clear.
Do you have set bedtime routines? We’d love to hear about what works for your children… write in the comments below.