A Montessori Approach to Bedtime: Establishing a Healthy Sleep Routine

Ahh, bedtime. Sometimes it can be a struggle! Below are a few tips and tricks in taking a Montessori approach to a positive sleeping routine.

Strive for quiet, relaxing family time before bed – avoid screen time.

Avoid silliness, the goal is a relaxed, calm tone.

Be consistent. Introduce an enjoyable, consistent routine at an early age. Younger siblings can observe an older sibling’s routine.

Don’t give up. If you introduce something new or different to your bedtime routine, give it some time before abandoning it, at least a week!

Incorporate choices into bedtime, such as what pajamas they would like to wear or what book they would like to read. This can help to avoid unnecessary power struggles

Preteach. Talk about bedtime routine as it gets closer. Photo cards or a posted schedule can be great resources.

Example Routine:

Put on PJs

Use bathroom/brush teeth

Read 1-2 stories

Special goodnight

If you child struggles with you separating have a go-to phrase and remain neutral. “I will check on you in three minutes, your job is to say goodnight mom/dad” and calmly place them back in bed. Sometimes this needs to be repeated more than once. As hard as it can be – giving in just makes it harder!

A few possible sleep solutions:

A heavier blanket to provide comfort and encourage stillness

Comfort object

White noise such as a fan

Deep breathing before bed – tensing and relaxing your body

Misting of lavender essential oil spray

Skin-to-skin contact – a simple as rubbing their back or cuddling while reading

Lots of gross motor and fresh air during the day

Below is a chart of some sleep estimates for children. Remember each child is different and through your observations you can adjust your child’s schedule.

Small World

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