We've all felt the negative effects of a bad night's sleep: poor concentration, irritable mood, and sluggishness. It's the same for our little ones. Tantrums and inconvenient nap times are just some of the side effects. It can be difficult for parents and kids alike to deal with the day after a night of tossing and turning. Children need all the help they can get to grow up well with healthy sleeping habits to support their learning, growing, and to set them up for a healthy lifestyle as adults. Setting a bedtime routine is an excellent way to ensure your child's good sleep. With just a few activities, your little one will be drifting off to dreamland every night with ease.
Follow these four simple tips to ensure a good night's sleep.
Decide on your schedule.
Be sure to set your bedtime routine to suit your family's lifestyle, whatever that may be, and stick to it. Being consistent is important to establishing a routine and setting the body clock. Pretty soon, your youngster might start telling you it's time for bed!
Start off your bedtime routine with bath time.
Wash off the day and transition to a calm atmosphere with a warm bath and soothing soaps. After they're clean and warm, keep your kids comfortable by getting cozy in pajamas and head to bed.
Set the mood.
The day might have been busy and exciting, but your nighttime routine should be calming and relaxing. You'll want to speak softly and dim the lights. Your little one can also enjoy Nested Naturals LUNA Kids Sleep Aid made with a premium blend of relaxing herbs with just a touch of melatonin to soothe the fussiest of sleepers.
Finally, share a bedtime story together.
Not only does reading improve vocabulary and general cognition, but reading can also reduce stress and anxiety and encourages a good night's sleep - for all of us! Choose a book that will entertain you both as you enjoy this special bonding time together.
Here are our top bedtime book recommendations for each age group.
For ages 4-5 years:
- The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats: Perfect for the winter season, join Peter as he wakes up to find that last night's snowfall has turned his city into a winter wonderland. Follow along as he crunches through the snow and enjoys all the snowy day activities.
- The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson: A mouse walking through the woods scares off other animals he meets by telling them the terrifying tale of the Gruffalo. But what happens when the mouse meets the Gruffalo in person…?
For ages 6-7 years:
- George's Marvelous Medicine by Roald Dahl: While looking after his miserable grandmother, George decides to experiment with her medicine and see if he can cure her of her mean and bossy attitude. Little does George know, his medicine is more marvelous than he would have ever expected!
- Once Upon a Star: A Poetic Journey through Space by James Carter: For curious kids, explore the wonders of space and our solar system with a fun and factual bedtime read. This book teaches about science and space in a way that will ignite imagination and interest.
For ages 8-10 years:
- Twins by Varian Johnson: Twins Maureen and Francine are feeling less like sisters and more like enemies as they run against the other in a race for class president. This brightly illustrated graphic novel will entice readers with both its drama and its heartfelt story.
- Hoot by Carl Hiaasen: When construction is planned on a site where endangered burrowing owls are nesting, new kid in school Roy sets out to save the owls with his friend in this environmental adventure.