Tips on moving in to a 'big' kid's bed!
Moving out of the cot and into a ‘big’ bed is a massive deal for little ones and can be just as daunting for parents too!
Firstly – hold off as long as you can! I would recommend waiting until at least 2 ½ years old. Generally speaking, a child younger than 2 is not emotionally or developmentally ready to sleep in a regular bed but by 2 ½ years old a child has more developed comprehension skills and will be more able to understand what is expected of them in regard to staying in their bed & going to sleep!
Transferring too early may increase the risk of getting up every 5 minutes to put your child back into their bed!
Here are a few common signs that could mean your child is ready for the move:
- They are asking to have a big kid bed!
- When standing in their cot your child’s chest is above the top rail
- They can and do regularly climb out of their cot
- Your wee one can follow simple instructions
- Your child has somewhat predictable sleep patterns.
- Your child generally sees bedtime as a positive experience
- He/or she is toilet training/ showing readiness of toilet training.
That being said - a huge part of parenting is trusting your instincts and most parents will know when their wee one is ready for the change!
Whilst your child may be ready, this can still be a big deal for some children. Below are a few tips on how to make this transition as easy as possible for everyone involved:
- Convert your cot! if your cot converts into a toddler bed your child will still be very familiar with their mattress and surroundings etc which is comforting to them. It’s the same bed but just looks different! (All Cariboo cots have toddler bed conversions available)
- Involve your child in setting the bed up and packing the cot away and even let them pick out a special new blanket or sheet set for their cool new bed!
- Praise them! /Use a reward chart – let your child know how proud you are of them when they stay in bed the whole night and explain that each time they do this they will receive a sticker on their reward chart and after 7 nights of staying in their bed they will get some kind of reward.
- Keep your bedtime routine the same as it was before.
- Only stick to one transition at a time – for example if you are also thinking it's time to wean off a bottle or dummy or white noise etc it pays to do each step separately as to not overwhelm your little one.
- A night light may be required if your child is showing signs of being frightened of the dark
- A baby gate on their bedroom door. This way if your child gets up in the night they can’t go wandering through the house. And they are likely to just crawl back into their beds (or fall asleep at the gate!)
Think your child is ready? Buy your Toddler Bed Conversion kit today!