Most parents know just how exhausting it can be when a child doesn’t stay in bed in the mornings. And if they play up at bedtime too, life can be even more tiring. Convincing your child to stay asleep until a reasonable hour is almost impossible sometimes. Of course, you can’t force them to close their eyes and drift off. But you may be able to provide the motivation they need to stay in their rooms safely for a little longer.
Children’s bedrooms come in all different sizes and colours. It’s really important not to overstimulate your kids before bed. But a bedroom should certainly be interesting enough to keep your child interested in spending time in there. Why not consider converting your child’s room into a Superheroes den? Or how about a Princess’s castle? There are lots of ways you can make this room the perfect little haven for your own superhero or princess.
Start with the bed. If you have a good sized budget, you may be able to buy a themed bed. Turrets with slides or ladders and an under-bed playhouse can be lots of fun for small children. Older children might enjoy a bed with a desk underneath. There they can do some drawing or even their homework from school. Don’t worry if you can’t stretch to replacing the whole bed. Some themed bedding with a curtain set could be just right for a child keen on their favourite TV characters.
You can also add a themed lampshade and even superhero pyjamas to the list. A rug, a poster, and maybe a pencil pot can complete the theme. Most children will play or read quite happily on their own for ten or twenty minutes at a time. This can give you those few extra minutes sleep you need early in the morning too.
Some parents argue that kids who won’t settle are craving attention. Using a themed bedroom to encourage self-led play and activities can help your child develop into an independent young person. If you feel that you need to give your kids more one-on-one attention, why not play in the room with your child for a few minutes at the end of the day? The games can then carry on after you leave until your child is happy to settle to sleep.
Keep a few age-appropriate books in the room where your child sleeps. These should be swapped out every few days so there is always something fresh for your kids to look at. They should also be separate from the books you read at storytime or as a bedtime read. Electronic toys can be noisy and feature flashing lights. There are some good arguments to suggest the screens emit light that interferes with the body’s ability to fall asleep. It may be best to keep such toys and devices out of a child’s bedroom.
Creating your child’s dream bedroom should always be done in collaboration with your kids. It’s a great project for you both to engage in. Best of all, it gives your child a chance to be really creative. Sleep well.