I remember when I had an early riser on my hands and I dreaded the time change. At least with the clocks moving forward your typical early morning appears to be at a more reasonable hour.
Here are the two approaches and some tips on how to transition your little ones through the time change:
1. “Do Nothing”:
On Saturday evening turn ALL your clocks forward one hour, and then on Sunday follow your regular schedule, but do everything according to the new clock time. If you have an early-riser he should wake up at a more reasonable hour.
2. Gradual Approach:
For children who struggle with the time change, it is best to take a more gradual approach. About four days to a week before the time change, begin putting your child to bed 15 to 20 minutes earlier, moving the time back every few days until you reach a full hour — a week ahead usually works best. So, if your child has a 7:00 p.m. bedtime, you want to begin with bedtime at 6:40 p.m. ,then 6:20 p.m., then 6:00 p.m. Be as consistent as possible, and adjust all meals, snacks and sleep times to the new schedule. That way the time change won’t feel so drastic on Saturday night.
Tips For Either Approach:
- Use Room Darkening/ Blackout shades. Remember the mornings will be brighter and evenings lighter and we don’t want sunlight shining into your child’s room causing any problems.
- Keep activities before bedtime calm, avoid bright lights and screen exposure.
- Getting sunshine and fresh air exposure first thing in the morning, will help reset the body’s internal clock.
- Try to do everything according to the new clock time starting Sunday morning.
- Make naps a priority during this transition. A well napped child will go to sleep easier at night time.
The ultimate goal is to get your child back on their normal daily and bedtime routines. It may take as long as a week, this is because your child’s internal clock is resetting itself.
I hope that these ideas and tips help you make a smooth transition to the new time this coming week.