If you are like many moms, you are looking for clear cut answers to your questions regarding your child’s napping behaviors.
“When should kids stop napping?”
This is a popular question that gets asked starting during the toddler phase of a child’s life.
The answer, however, is not entirely clear cut.
Your toddler, might be deceiving you with a sleep regression and making you think it’s time to drop their last nap.
And then there’s the question of…
“How do I implement quiet time for kids in place of nap time?”
The list of questions goes on and on.
One of the reasons I enjoy being a part of the Babywise Friendly Blog Network so much, is that we put our heads together on specific topics like these twice a year.
Twice a year, we dedicate a week to all write on the same overall topic to come up with some great posts for parents to use as a resource.
This week, we’ve all written on the topic of “rest time for kids”. Everything from what it looks like, to when to know if your child is ready to drop the last nap and more!
Below you will see links to 6 posts all on the topic of rest time!
You’ll get to read personal experiences, what rest time really looks like in our houses, and all about the benefits of implementing rest time! Enjoy!
Rest Time Roundup Posts:
Rest Time for Preschoolers
Kim’s son is 5 years old and attends a Pre-K program.
In Kim’s post, you’ll find information regarding the sleep needs of the preschool aged child, along with the benefits of having a quiet time or rest time implemented in place of nap.
Not only does Kim talk about the benefits for her 5 year old, she also discusses how it benefits the whole family.
As a mom with an almost 4 year old in a preschool program, I completely agree with everything Kim talks about in this post, and love how she has everything outlined so clearly.
What you’ll find in this post:
- Sleep needs of preschoolers
- Discussion of the stimulation levels of the child attending preschool/pre-K
- Benefits of rest time
- Benefits for the whole family
- What rest time looks like
- Rest time activities
Click here to read Kim’s post and get some great ideas for planning out your child’s activities!
Rest Time for Older Children
Emily is a mom of 4, and she firmly believes that the final nap should NEVER be dropped! It should simply transitioned into rest time…
From my experience with Caroline, I agree with Emily’s sentiments on this so much!
Caroline has tried to drop her nap multiple times. We’ve always hung on to the “time slot”, and implemented rest time in it’s place.
As a result, when Caroline was ready to nap again, she was set up for success to do so.
“There is not a lot of difference between nap time and rest time. The only real difference is that during nap time, the child sleeps. During rest time they are awake.”Emily Parker
Yes! I couldn’t agree with this statement more. Rest time and nap time in our house look almost identical.
It is because of this, that we have been able to hang on to naps for so long.
“I still set them up for nap success. I keep the room dark and I turn on their sound machine.”Emily Parker
Seriously, it’s like I wrote this post myself! Emily and I share so many ideas about rest time.
I loved reading her post and finding out that we do things in such similar ways!
We also keep the room dark, curtains closed, sound machine on, etc. I set Caroline up for sleep, while explaining expectations for rest time.
Emily further explains in her post:
-When and how to make the transition to rest time
-What this rest time looks like for school aged children (yes she keeps the rest time for them as well on the weekends and during the summer)
-How the family benefits from rest time
-Some specifics on what rest time looks like for everyone in their family
Emily is so great at giving us a true sneak peek into their family and how everything actually unfolds.
Click here to read Emily’s full post on rest time for older children.
When Do Kids Stop Napping?
Here’s your kind of clear cut answer for the day LOL: If she had to choose an age to drop the last nap, she’d pick “around four years old”.
In Val’s post, she recommends that your child be able to check off all 4 requirements of her checklist before dropping the last nap.
One of these items is simply being around the age of 4.
The other three items, I think are crucial to being able to tell if your child is ready.
I know we all like to just hear an age and be done with our decision.
The reality, however, is that a child’s ability to drop the nap should be more focused on if they can actually handle it well, than solely based on their age.
Read all about the following in Val’s post:
- 4 item checklist to know if your child is ready to drop the last nap
- Logistics of a daily quiet time for your child
- Benefits of a daily quiet time
- When her kids stopped napping
- When her kids stopped rest time
Click here to find that checklist and read all about her recommendations!
Toddler Refuses to Nap? Implement Rest Time Rules Instead
I actually decided awhile back to do a whole series on rest time. The series is finally complete.
If you think your child is to the point of dropping naps, I recommend reading the series in this order:
1- When do toddlers stop napping?
This post is all about how to know, and how to figure out, if your child is actually ready to drop naps.
Click here to read the full post.
2- How to make the transition to rest time
Once you’ve determined that your child is ready to make the transition to rest time, this post outlines out to go about making that transition.
Click here to read the full post.
3- Rest time rules
This is the final part of the series. This post discusses exactly what rest time looks like in our house.
It even touches on how we’ll make our final transition to NO rest time before Caroline starts full day Kindergarten!
Click here to read the full post and see exactly what our rest time rules are!
I hope you’ve enjoyed this roundup of posts on the topic of rest time!
I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments… when did your child stopped napping, what rest time struggles do you have, etc.