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Sometimes getting the kids to bed is not as easy as parents would like it to be. Summer is coming to an end and that means that a routine bedtime will become a part of a preschooler’s schedule. In Step2’s last blog, Back to School Tips for Preschoolers, it was suggested that if your child has fallen out of a bedtime routine, it is essential to begin getting back on track before school begins. However, that is easier said than done.
Here are some great tips from Parenthood.com to help ease the struggle and win the bedtime battle!
1. Deal with your own stress and emotions before you begin the bedtime routine. This is a great idea! By relaxing and calming down before the potential battle may begin, it is a good to take a step back and assess how you will handle the bedtime situation. Children may resist going to sleep if they are being yelled at. The calmer a parent is, the less resistant a child will be.
2. Ease the transition to bed for your children. Warn your children ahead of time that bedtime is coming up. You do not want to completely drag them away from the television or playtime. Participating in bedtime tasks earlier on in the night may ease the transition and not surprise children that it is time for bed. Having them brush their teeth after dinner or putting on their pajamas (which means no more outdoor play!) an hour before bed limits them to what they can do to try to delay their bedtime.
3. Negotiate rules with your children. Let your children help create the rules for bedtime. However, make sure to stand your ground! Talk about the benefits of going to sleep at a good time on the weekdays so that they can have special rewards of staying up later on the weekends.
4. Create an environment that fosters sleep. If your child has toys all over their room before bedtime, they are more likely to want to continue to play and become easily distracted. Make sure a child’s toys are put away in toy chests. Also, make sure you have a good book to read to them to help them focus on going to sleep.
5. Don’t sweat the small stuff. Some days are going to be harder than others to get a child to sleep. If they are 15 minutes late for their bed time, do not stress out. However, make sure to emphasize that a bedtime routine is important to your little ones!
There is something magical about having small children. As they grow and learn to pull out their toys for play, it seems harder for us to keep their bedrooms organized. There are easy things that we can do to help with this.
1. Toy box. Having a toy box in a child’s room will keep the large toys stored in one place. It can be bought in different shapes, colors and styles that will help stimulate a child’s own imagination in his or her playtime.
2. Shelving. Brightly painted shelving can be securely fastened to a child’s bedroom wall and at a level that the toys can be easily and safely reached. This will prevent climbing.
3. Clear plastic containers. Clear plastic containers can be used to store crayons and small toys. We can see what is inside. These can be stored on top of the shelves.
4. Over the door shoe holders. Over the door shoe holders are great for storing action figures or small dolls.
5. Storage bins. Different colored storage bins are very useful for putting any remaining toys in after the toy box is full.
In designing a child’s bedroom, doing these simple things will easily organize it. A child will be eager to help put the toys back where they belong after an enjoyable time playing with them.