A good bedtime routine at an early age is the first step to a lifetime of healthy sleeping habits. According to the National Sleep Foundation, infants, and toddlers up to the age of two years old spend more time sleeping than awake. Newborns can sleep up to 17 hours a day, but generally only sleep for two to four hours at a time. A healthy bedtime routine and a restful night will lower the stress levels and help prepare your child for the activities ahead. Although sleep needs change with age, your child’s body needs the rest to get the most out of the learning that happens everyday, especially in a childcare or daycare environment.
Although infants have varying sleep patterns, parents can begin to establish the routine very early by incorporating a few simple techniques to encourage a healthy sleep routine.
Take a look at these simple ways parents can help develop daily routines for an infant, toddler, or preschool child:
Establish your patterns. As bedtime approaches establish a daily routine that you can manage. For example, your child may eat, rest, bathe, read together, then lights out for bedtime. Whatever you decide, be sure it’s something you can do every day so your child will learn what to expect and know when it’s bedtime.
Teach your infant the difference between day and night. After about 2 weeks, you can begin to teach an infant the difference between night and day. During the day, keep the environment bright and busy with interaction, noise, frequent activity, and playful conversation. Then, at night, quiet everything in the room, dim the lights, and create a peaceful and calm atmosphere. This will aid in a smooth transition from daytime to bedtime and restful sleep.
Put your infant in bed. You may choose to rock your baby or sing a quiet bedtime song while your child falls asleep. Either way, your infant will learn to adapt to an everyday, consistent routine and enjoy the healthy benefits of adequate sleep.
Be consistent. In order to form a routine, consistency is a must. Your child will know what to expect and eventually begin to feel sleepy at bedtime. Be sure to start your routine at the same time every day.
Establishing healthy sleep patterns is just one of the many important areas of early childhood development and learning. For help with other solutions for your infant, toddler, or preschool child, feel free to contact a professional at Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academies. They have many years of experience at all levels of childhood growth and development and would welcome a conversation about your child’s educational needs.
About Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academies®
Headquartered in the North Atlanta suburb of Duluth, GA, Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academies® provide secure, nurturing, and educational environment for children ages 6 weeks – 12 years. We help children to bloom into responsible, considerate, and contributing members of society. With over 160 locations in 15 states, Kids ‘R’ Kids International® is a family owned and operated organization that ranks in the top 10 nationwide for franchised early childhood education centers. Find a location near Atlanta.