Bedtime can be difficult for kids and parents alike. Winding down in our fast-paced lives is no easy task. A good bedtime routine can make all the difference in the world between a rested family and a tired one. Adding the right activities to your bedtime routine will help kids sleep, and will help you sleep as well. Add these three activities to your bedtime routine to help kids sleep.
#1 Eat a Light Snack
A light snack will make sure kids don’t go to bed on an empty stomach. The right snack will also make kids drowsy. Dairy products are loaded with tryptophan, which produce serotonin. High-carb foods will also help young ones doze off. Good foods include:
- Whole-grain toast
- Cottage cheese
You can add to your child’s bedtime snack routine by using the same plates, bowls, and utensils every night for their snack. Find dishes with the nighttime sky on them or some other reminder of bedtime. Then, only use them at bedtime.
#2 Enjoy Some Bedtime Conversation
There are several benefits to having a short conversation with your kids before bed. First, it will help them voice any worries or concerns they may have. These might be thoughts they have leftover from the day or worries about going to bed. Second, it will give your child something calming and reassuring to focus on as they fall asleep.
Here are 20 open-ended questions to start a conversation with your child. Choose a new one each night, or focus on one topic a week. Make sure to avoid any over-stimulating topics, such as going to the zoo tomorrow, as it will wind your kids back up.
If your child is afraid to go to sleep, make that a part of your nightly conversation, too. Ask them why they are afraid, then address their concerns. For example, if they think monsters live in the dark, add a nightlight. Or show them there are no monsters in their room even in the dark.
#3 Solve a Bedtime Word Search
A bedtime word search makes a wonderful addition or replacement to a bedtime story. Word searches also provide a good alternative to video games since kids don’t need to use a screen to solve a word search. By making a bedtime word search – or even a crossword puzzle – for your child, you can create the perfect puzzles to help them fall asleep every night.
Include words that help them remember how to fall asleep, like “breathe,” “music,” or “eyes closed.” Also, include words that give your kids happy thoughts. Remind them of their favorite books, fun dreams they’ve had, and of course, remind them how much you love them. Your kids might solve a word search like this when they can’t sleep.
After a while, you’ll also find the right word search size to help your kids fall asleep. Maybe it only takes a word search with 5 words to help them fall asleep, or maybe it takes 20.
You could even make a word search about the bedtime conversations you have with your child. They’ll feel soothed by the reminder of your conversations. They will also find comfort in the reassurance that their parents listen to them and are there for them.
Each child will have their own unique needs for bedtime. With a little trial and error, you’ll find the right bedtime routine to help your kids sleep. Add these three activities to your child’s bedtime routine tonight for a more restful sleep for everyone.
Kristen Seikaly used her artistic background, research skills, and love for the internet to launch her first blog, Operaversity. Now she uses the skills to connect teachers, parents, and game enthusiasts with Crossword Hobbyist and My Word Search. She studied music at the University of Michigan, and now lives in Philadelphia.