Children and the clock change
Are you one of those people who never gave the clock change a second thought…until you had kids? Now the very word might send shivers down your timbers and rightly so…for some parents this can cause chaos for little ones and their sleep.
This year the spring forward is on the 29th March 2020.
You might lose an hour in bed BUT something very positive also happens… Literally overnight those children who have been early rising will suddenly start waking up an hour later. Blissful right? So if your child has been waking at 5am that will miraculously become 6am. Now that really is a gift!
If you capitalise on this clock change and get your family straight into the new routine with naps and meals, you might just find this new wake up time sticks.
However, if your child’s early rising is a result of overtiredness then the clock change is unlikely to have this effect. If this is the case, I would recommend you read my early rising blog here to help.
What is the best approach for the clock change? It can be so confusing trying to work out the timings for these changes but just remember one thing – the spring forward requires an earlier bedtime.
There are several options and the one you choose will be dependent on your child’s temperament, age and also your family circumstances.
Here are some options:
OPTION 1: Cold Turkey the night before
This option is great for adaptable kids and/or families who just need to crack on without too much fuss.
On Saturday evening get your little one off to bed an hour earlier than usual. So if bedtime is usually 7pm, this is about to become 8pm when the clocks go forward. So putting them to bed at 6pm is actually the new 7pm straight after the clock change.
Option 2: Gradual Shift
If you don’t think your little one will manage to settle to sleep an hour early on the Saturday evening, you could work towards it gradually over the preceding days with 15-minute increments:
Assuming a usual bedtime of 7pm
Wednesday bedtime is 6.45pm
Thursday bedtime is 6.30pm
Friday bedtime is 6.15pm
Saturday bedtime is 6.00pm
Then on Sunday you go back to your usual 7pm bedtime which is actually 6:00pm as per the night before.
Option 3: Meet in the middle
This option helps you move towards the new time without reducing the overall nights sleep to much.
Put your little one to bed thirty minutes earlier than usual on the Saturday night. Then, on the Sunday back to usual bedtime by the new clock time.
Remember it can take up to a week for your children and family to fully adjust to the new time so don’t stress too much and just go with the flow. If your children are looking tired then having a couple of early nights can help top up any lost sleep and overtiredness.
This clock change means long blissful summer days are almost here so embrace it and use it to your advantage to get your children sleeping later.
Wishing all you wonderful Mummas out there a very happy Mothers Day. You all rock!
For more info on how I can help you with your little ones sleep please see my profile here