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  1. #1

    Do you have a bedtime routine?

    As I did the bedtime routine last night, I wondered if other mums also have similar routines. I was reading this article on getting your children to go to sleep, and I love the points about making each night special and trying to make up a song. My husband and I were singing to my children the other night before bed, and they thought it was so funny. We have a routine that we started several years ago, and it has changed a bit, but we try to stick to it for the most part. I have found that having a routine does help my children go to sleep better.

    Do you have a bedtime routine? At what age did you start the bedtime routine?

  2. #2
    We have had a bedtime routine for our boys ever since they were infants. I know that sounds a little odd but it wasn't anything to intense we would just dim the lights, do a warm bath, pajamas, read a book, give them a bottle and put them to bed. Some nights one or both would decide they wanted to party with mum and dad a bit later but more often than not we got the boys down for the night at the same time.

    Lucky for us, our boys have always been great sleepers and still take a nap almost every day (they will be 5 in May) but at age 3 bedtime turned into a huge battle. We had slacked on our routine and boy were we paying for it! I finally decided to write out a list of each thing we did before bed starting with bath and ending with shutting the door, that way they knew what to. We would read entire the list through before we started then, after we finished something on the list we would take them to it and say, "what's next?" They could usually tell us nd then we would move onto reading books, using the potty and so on. When I began this I thought it might take ahwhile for them to get it but they went to bed without a fuss the first night. Of course, I showered them with praise the next morning and from then on it has been pretty easy to get them to bed.

    We don't refer to a list any more but we start the routine an hour before we actually want them in bed which helps a lot.

  3. #3
    Currently we don't have a bedtime routine. Apart from turn the lights off and feeding to sleep! I am finding with parenting that things change so quickly month to month so maybe I will have a different answer next month!

  4. #4
    I agree with ljmarsden, things are always changing around here. At one point we had a very consistent bedtime routine starting pretty early. With baby three and four, no such routine exists. lol.

  5. #5
    Someone once told me, "children thrive on routine". I actually believe that this is true, and I've seen my children thrive when I've implemented routines. However, I'm not a very structured "routine" person myself, and I've found that children with different temperaments do better on different types of routines.

    I'm great at making a schedule and poor at executing it for any length of time.

    So I've learned how to successfully parent and homeschool my children with my God given "relaxed" approach to life. This is so very important for a parent to understand, especially if they're not a structured person by nature. Here's a thread where you can learn more about the personalities in your family.

    So for bed time, I've always been very relaxed as far as having any kind of a "routine". That doesn't, however, mean that I've been relaxed in allowing my children to stay up past bedtime or skip brushing their teeth. So here's what our bedtime "routine" looks like.

    Bedtime is 9:00PM, so at about 8:45PM I go upstairs with the younger children, and I help them into their night clothes and help them brush their teeth. In bed by 9PM.

    There was a time when I wanted some "quiet" time before 9PM, so I'd start them going to bed at 8:15PM and in bed by 8:30. Then they could read quietly in their bed until 9PM, but lights out was 9PM.

    When my children were very young, bed time was 8:00PM and you'll notice that as your children get older and the dynamics of your family change, that "routines" will change as well.

    What's most important in all aspects of parenting is consistency. They need to know that your "no" means "no", and if you're consistent in that, then there will be much less of your children challenging you.

    This is what worked for us.

  6. #6
    Yes I have a bed time routine for taking naps and at night. My son has to go to bed at certain times, even though he really does not go to bed on time all the time. I am still strict on when he lays down and goes to sleep at night, because he tries to stay up late, but most of the time he knows when he is sleepy. I am one of the happiest mums when he is going to bed on his own.

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