What is a toddler? It's that scrumptious little human who is just learning how to walk. They toddle, sometimes they fall, sometimes they resort to crawling. But they are as adorable as a baby deer standing up on shaky legs for the first time.
They're ‘classified’ as a child between 12-36 months generally, but you may have an early toddler so don't be surprised if they are up and moving before then. And get onto the baby-proofing! You can’t conceive all the sharp edges and choking hazards you have lying around until you bub starts to toddle.
If you have a toddler, you might have had toddler bedtime battles. Kids get overtired, overactive, overstimulated, and they find it really hard to switch off. This is why sometimes you may wonder - why does my toddler scream at bedtime?
We have some helpful, friendly, happy, advice to help with a toddler bedtime routine.
Yes, we totally understand that this can be hard! There will be times when you're away, at someone else’s house, have guests at your house, so it may result in your toddler screaming at bedtime or toddler tantrums at bedtime. You're not alone, every parent in the world has suffered this.
But, you can try to set a routine at home and away. For example one of our crunchy moms here at the Organic Baby Food Shop used toddler bedtime music as a really useful and simple tool for soothing. She would sing a few favorite bedtime songs for toddlers like twinkle twinkle little star, silent night, Mary Mary and her little one would drift off to sleep. If you're not a great singer you can make a soft and gentle playlist with lullabies or nice songs and sit with your toddler while they sleep.
Some parents like to cuddle their children or pat them or rub their back. This is lovely and soothing, but, be warned, if the time comes to break this habit it can sometimes be hard to do.
Bedtime books for toddlers are another fantastic part of a night time routine and a favorite book can be taken anywhere! Kids love looking at the pictures and if you read in a soothing voice they may drop off before you finish the tale.
Do you have a toddler that constantly gets out of bed? Again, you're not alone. Allegedly, the trick is to keep gently walking them back to bed until they stay. Make sure you have your 'patience' cap on because this can be really tough!
Another method is the 3 strikes method where if they get up more than 3 times they have a small discouragement the next day, like less playtime in the park.
We prefer the patience method, teaching a child with calmness, to adopt a routine. Toddlers can be too young to rationally understand punishment and often it has the opposite effect, making them even more upset.
There's no strict rule of thumb, but it's good to try and set a fairly regular bedtime. If your toddler has a big nap during the day you may choose 7 or 8pm. If they're a light or non-napper it would need to be earlier. Sometimes you want to shift their sleep so they wake up later and stay awake at night so they see mom or dad after they finish work, before bub goes to sleep.Pick a routine that works for you and try to stick to it where possible.
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