A wind down routine is a special time for a child before bed. It is also a time to allow your little one to prepare for bed.
Why you child needs a wind down routine?
A wind down routine has 2 main functions. Firstly it is a time for your child to calm down and get ready for bed. We can’t expect children to go from play straight to bed. They need time to relax their body and brain. The second reason is to indicate it almost time for bed. Helping our little ones learn to calm and relax for bed is a skill for life. It allows them to be able to settle to sleep with ease.
What a wind down routine can include?
A wind down routine can be something long that includes saying good night to all the people and pets in the house or it can be a simple book.
It doesn’t need to be too long it just needs to be long enough to allow your child to calm and get ready for bed. You can do the same thing before every sleep or you can have a longer one for bedtime and a shorter one for bed.
Example wind down routines
You can choose to do a shorter one for a nap and then a longer one for bed time. For a nap it can as simple as lullaby e.g. twinkle twinkle or saying such as ‘Sleep time, love you.’ Then for bed time a bath, book, bed. You can add a massage, lullaby or really whatever you like as long as it is calming and relaxing. Putting on a sleeping bag is also a great part of a bed time routine, making this the last thing you do right before bed. Make you bedtime routine something your child wants to do and it will make bedtime easier.
This time is also a great opportunity to spend some special time with your little one. I recommend all children up to 5 years if not older have a wind routine before bed.
If you would like some information on helping your little one get great sleep at day care check out this blog.