- 2 mins
Tips for Bedtime Success
“It’s too light out!”
“I’m not tired yet.”
“But the neighbors are still playing outside.”
“Can I stay up just a little longer?”
If these sound familiar, you are the parent of a child who is asserting their independence and learning the ins and outs of negotiating. You are also the parent of a child who is feeling the transition to longer days and more activity due to nicer weather. This time of year is tricky even for those of us with really solid bedtime routines. My two daughters, 8 and 10, go to bed at 8:00 pm every night. Now that they have activities later in the evening because it stays light later, their perception is that their routine should change—and you may find your child asserting a similar opinion.
Here are three tips for maintaining consistent bedtime success:
Perception vs. reality
Although the kids think their evening routine and lights-out time should change, keep them the same. It will take a few days to help them accept this, but keeping the time and routines the same will pay off. Use common strategies such as bath, reading books, and dark curtains to maintain calm and consistency.
When kids can’t fall asleep, reading in bed is a great way to help them unwind and get their focus off of the time or other distractions. Keep a little basket of favorite books near their bed, so kids can independently choose one to look at before it’s time for lights out.
I like to joke that my two daughters have never heard the end of a Moshi Story. Even on the most finicky of nights when they are having trouble settling down, once the lights go off and the Moshi Story goes on, they listen for a while and then they are off to dreamland. These stories are great resources to try if you aren’t already using them as part of your child’s bedtime routine.