Is it time to move my toddler into their big kid bed?
Four helpful tips to get them sleeping in a big bed for kids
Since I’ve come from the mattress industry, friends always ask me when and how to move their child to a bed and what to buy. The answer isn’t always a once size fits all solution but here’s my top FOUR tips to tackling the transition.
1. The BEST time is when it's right for you and your family, we are all different, but don't rush it!
We were about to have another baby and the question loomed.
Should we move our son Liam into his own big boy bed before the baby’s born so he doesn’t find it unsettling once she’s here?
He still seemed happy in his cot and hadn’t tried to get out, so we decided we would wait a few more months as the baby would be in a bassinet.
But about 10 days after being at home with our daughter Amelia, Liam started waking between four and five AM each morning! Testing times with a newborn. Then he wanted us to read him books in bed rather on the reading chair.
He then just stayed in bed during story time and wanted to sleep there and he had an amazing sleep.
No issues- he didn’t roll out (although I did what every mother probably does and put pillows beside him!) He slept until 7.10am the next morning!
2. Make it fun! Use a tool like the Gro Clock, or a special toy that can sleep in the bed with them
This leads on to my second tip because we decided to buy a Gro Clock, as we had heard amazing things. What is it? It teaches our little early risers to stay in bed just that little bit longer. You can set them to change to yellow (when the sun comes up) at the time you want them to get up.
3. Set the rules and stick to them
When Liam went to sleep at night, we told him if he wanted to sleep in the bed he was not allowed to get up until it was light, and to call us to come get him. He was only getting one chance!
Now that we have been trailing this for a good few months, he doesn’t always stay in bed until the sun comes up, and I must admit we do have a few out of beds in the middle of the night each week, but it’s not causing any big issues. We found the Gro Clock to be a good tool to help the process go a little more smoothly, and add a bit more fun into the routine for Liam.
4. Find the right mattress
When it comes to the mattress, we got Liam a Sleepyhead Chiropratic pop up trundler with an extra supportive spring system, perfect for growing bodies. The Sleepyhead Junior range would also be a good option. There are quite a few different mattresses out there, but I strongly feel it is worth spending more on the mattress technology.
Why a Pop Up Trundler?
- These are king singles, so there's more room for the both of you when reading
- You or a little friend can sleep on the pull out
- It can be used as a spare bed in later years- it pops up to the same height as the bed
- And most importantly, you can pull the bottom mattress out below and use it as a little step or a landing to 'fall' onto if they roll out
For more on this topic, check out the Ministry of Health's recommendations.