Posted by admin
Do your children have a tendency to fight sleep, no matter how tired they are?
Do they have trouble relaxing before bedtime?
Some of the time, the food they eat and the things they drink can have an impact. However, many times, it’s also a matter of various excuses that kids come up with in order to avoid going to bed.
Children are very fun-loving, and there is nothing wrong with them wanting to live life to the fullest! However, as parents, its important to also teach them balance.
A study done by Ramos, Zuania (2013) talked about the challenges that parents must overcome when they try their best to get their children to go to bed at appropriate times. If children don’t get enough sleep, especially R.E.M. sleep, they will have a potential to misbehave at school during the day.
Lack of good sleep also causes health problems in both children and adults. You may want to consider putting a reward system into place in order to get your children to go to bed at a good time. This would include reading them a bedtime story for good behavior.
Why is Technology Harmful at Bedtime?
Children’s’ minds and hearts are very sensitive, but are being tainted by the world around us. These mental and emotional influences come by way of computer and internet use, video games like PS3 and X-Box, and lots of television watching.
To explain this in a scientific way, but as simply as possible, human beings are made of sound and light waves, and so is technology. Technology transfers the images that are found in television and the internet to our hearts and minds. This is why children are so easily affected by these sound and light waves.
Having the television, computer, and other lamps and lights on right before bedtime can create a mentally stimulating environment that is difficult to pull away from.
Tactics on Persistent Bedtime Battles with your Children
If you create a different environment for your children, especially right before bedtime, and make this a habit, it’s going to be so much easier for your children to become tired earlier and fall asleep faster.
Besides turning off all electronics, and harsh lights, you may want to consider reading bedtime stories. You can’t read in the dark, so you may want to insert lower wattage light bulbs into the lamps in your children’s bedrooms. This will greatly help them to become sleepy.
Telling bedtime stories is a forgotten ritual among many parents in this day and age. Possibly, they don’t think that their children want to be read to. Or, maybe parents just feel too stressed out, so by the end of the evening they don’t have the energy to cater to their children’s intellectual needs.
A recent study that was discussed in another article by Kavita Toor, talked about the decrease in bedtime storytelling by parents. Toor talks about how parents are not able to convince their children to have an affinity for educational pursuits such as reading books because they are more interested in electronics.
Promoting Story Telling in the Early Years
It is vital for parents to tell children stories, especially bedtime stories, at a young age. Children utilize stories to learn how to extend themselves outwards to others, and to create themselves into something they never knew they could be.
According to the study of Susan Engel, (1996-97), children learn from telling stories themselves. They learn about feelings, emotions, and the impact of past events. Telling children bedtime stories ultimately teaches them how to communicate well with others, which is a vital skill in life.
Bedtime stories are great regular activity, but along with them, it’s important to remember to implement a consistent formula.
3 Proven Bedtime Battle Strategies
1. Create a Comfortable Environment
As stated earlier in this article, remember to change the light bulbs to a softer wattage so that there won’t be an overwhelming environmental stimulation. Give your child(ren) more security by purchasing a night light also. Turn off all electronics such as the television, computer, and video games at least an hour or so before bedtime.
2. Plan Relaxing Activities
Besides reading bedtime stories, you may want to play soft music, or even give your child(ren) a bath.
3. Be Persistent and Consistent
You are the parent and you have the right to make demands. Don’t let your children tell you what they will do. You tell them what they will do. Don’t be on task one day and let up and take it easy the next day, or your children will become even more confused.
The following are strategies, but they are not final solutions for putting children to sleep early. They should be used together, not separately, in order to be successful. That way, over time, your children will form a positive habit of going to sleep on time, every time.
If you have other ideas and strategies that makes children go to bed early, share a story in the comments below.
Toor, Kavita. (2013). Significant Drop in the Bedtime Storytelling By Present Day Parents. TOPNEWS: News You Can Use.