Sleep is important for all people, but children often resist it. If your child needs encouragement to accept rest more readily, focus your school studies around a bedtime theme. Your children will learn about the importance of sleep and think about the positive aspects of snuggling down for bed.
- Read books with a bedtime theme. Find these at your local library; the main branch of the Peoria Public Library is located at 107 NE Monroe, Peoria, Ill.
- Make a paper quilt. Glue paper squares and rectangles on a sheet of construction paper to resemble a quilt pattern.
- Play a sleep-themed rhyming game. Children lie down and pretend to sleep. You call out pairs of words. If the words do not rhyme, the children continue to sleep. If they do rhyme, children jump up.
- Make a nighttime sky picture. Glue a yellow paper moon to a black or blue sheet of construction paper. Use a cotton swab to dot stars on the paper will yellow tempera paint.
- Snack on milk and cookies.
- Sing lullabies. Children could work on memorizing and performing one. For handwriting practice, have your child copy the lyrics of a song.
- Name things that people do while getting ready for bed, such as brushing teeth or reading. If your child does the thing that you name, he stands up. If he does not do that thing, he remains seated.
- Make a graph of bedtime preparations. List on a bar graph things that people do to prepare for bed. Record how many members of your family do each of the items on the graph. If your family is small, children can interview friends or relatives.
- Read "Goodnight Moon" by Margaret Wise Brown, then ask children what items in their bedrooms they could tell goodnight. Kids can draw a picture to illustrate their ideas.
- Discuss why sleep is important. Other topics for discussion are jobs that people do at night, the different places that people sleep and the reason that it is dark at night.
Sleep is an important part of life for everyone, so take time to focus your young child's schooling on the subject. Kids will gain an appreciation for the importance of sleep, remember the positive aspects of settling down for bed and gain an understanding that each person has a unique bedtime routine. Snuggle up with your child for a fun study of this cozy topic.