The R+F Blog

Quick Tips: Bedtime routine for your toddler

Quick Tips: Bedtime routine for your toddler

Tips to improving your toddler’s bedtime routine

A consistent bedtime routine helps your toddler understand that it’s time to wind down for the day, and prepares them for a restful night. Bedtime is an opportunity to spend quality time with your little one – but it can also be chaotic as kids want nothing else but to play, and tired parents become frustrated. You may have tried to introduce a routine of your own but are struggling to make it stick.

Here are 3 easy tips to help get your bedtime routine back on track, and (most importantly) a good night’s sleep for the whole family!

1. Create a calm sleep environment for your toddler

Their environment is key, especially when you’re trying to switch the mood from playtime to quiet time. Try keep their bedroom calm and soothing – it’s much easier for them to drift off that way.

If your little one is easily distracted by playful toys, take these out of the bedtime-battle equation and leave them outside of the bedroom. You can gently introduce this rule by explaining that their toy is to also going to sleep, and that they can see them again in the morning. Your child may also like to act out the motion of putting their toys to bed as well.

If they enjoy the company of a toy during the night, opt for a soft toy that specifically becomes their ‘night time teddy’ (or whatever their favourite toy is). It may stay in their bed and be the incentive to help them leave behind other toys. Just make sure this bedtime toy doesn’t make any playful animations or sounds!

  • Dim the lights or use a side lamp to signal that it’s time to wind down.
  • Ensure their room is dark, especially for when the days are longer and the sun is still up when they’re going to sleep. You could also use a night light or alarm clock to teach them day from night, and when they’re allowed to get up again.
  • A noise machine can create a gentle, soothing ambiance.

2.  Keep it fun and involve them in the process

Your toddler’s bedtime routine shouldn’t feel like a burden or long list of tasks to complete every night. While structure can help them learn the process involved to wind down for the evening, it’s also an opportunity to spend quality time with your little one. Make it fun for both of you. Some ideas include:

  • Run a soothing bath. If playful toys, soap and bubble bath equal playtime in your household, try keep this bath simple with warm water and a wash cloth.
  • Letting them choose their pyjamas.
  • Using a toothbrush in their favourite colour.
  • Playing a special song before bedtime. Check out Rascal + Friends on Spotify
  • A quiet craft activity, like a colouring-in book or short learning activity. Download FREE Rascal + Friends colouring-in sheets, maze activities and alphabet flashcards on our News + Resources hub.
  • A special story told by you or read from a storybook.
  • Each sharing a highlight or something special about their day. If your little one is in preschool/daycare, this is a nice way of catching up on their day.

3. Make it routine for your toddler

Keep it routine. That means even after a long day or even when the kids are extra fussy, still try to follow the sequence of events in your routine. Of course, that’s easier said than done, and there will be times where you can’t go through all the motions. Don’t feel like you’ve thrown in the towel if you miss a few steps here and there. Just know that with good consistency, your toddler will start to make these steps habits of their own without your instruction. This responsibility helps to make bedtime a more seamless process in the long run.

Remember, a bedtime routine doesn’t have to be a complicated series of events. It should include the range of motions that help you get the essentials done, and be an enjoyable experience for the whole family.

Join the Rascal Family

We’d love to stay in touch! Receive email updates about Rascal + Friends products, offers, blog articles and events. Unsubscribe anytime.