Summer is coming to an end, and soon your children will be heading back to school. Making sure they are properly rested is important to their success.
According to Beverly Anderson, executive director for Ebenezer Child Care Centers with locations on Milwaukee’s southside, and in downtown Milwaukee, Oak Creek and West Allis/Wauwatosa, “The average child enrolled in 3K or 4K typically sleeps 11-13 hours each night. Children ages five to 12 need 10-11 hours of sleep. Anything short of this amount could cause your children to have a shortened attention span and difficulty concentrating in school.”
Anderson says knowing your children’s age and how much sleep they should be getting each night is imperative to choosing a specific time for bed each night and sticking to it.
Routines are critical to preventing bedtime blues. Anderson recommends that, if your children’s bedtime is set for 8 p.m., you start preparing for this time one-hour prior. She says it is best to provide children with a five-minute warning that you are going to start preparing for bed, and then begin a number of routine activities to help them calm down.
First have your children take a bath or shower to help them relax and get dressed for bed. Next, serve them a healthy bedtime snack, and sit with them to enjoy some low-key time and a few bedtime stories. Then, brush your teeth together and head off to their bedroom. While in there, let them pick out their clothes for the next day, and then tuck them into bed.
Anderson recommends that you conclude the day by talking about what is planned for the next day, so your children will feel prepared for what awaits them in the morning.
“This helps prevent anxiety over the unknown,” says Anderson. “Children thrive on routines and making sure they know what is planned is critical to them starting off on the right foot each morning.”
Every Ebenezer Child Care Center focuses on all aspects of a child’s development: cognitive, physical, emotional, and social. In addition to providing quality care, the agency also offers other educational programming all aimed at helping parents.
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The agency has locations on Milwaukee’s southside, and in downtown Milwaukee, Oak Creek and West Allis/Wauwatosa. The agency’s main office is located at 1496 South 29th Street, Milwaukee. For more information, please call 414-643-5070.