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Why do children sometimes sleep better at daycare?

Have you ever walked into a daycare and wondered how in the world the teachers get the children to listen so well and nap all at the same time? It’s hard enough to get your child down for a nap at home, yet they make it look so easy. You know what we’re talking about. Nap and bedtimes can be a real struggle at home. It’s a constant battle to get your child to lay down and stay in their bed and just sleep! This can be frustrating, especially when you see how well they sleep at daycare. Now, why is that?

According to The Baby Sleep SIte “most daycares operate on a schedule for all children, including infants. If you haven’t adopted a schedule at home, you may find that your baby responds so well to this kind of consistent routine that he’s sleeping far better at daycare than he does at home!” If you find this to be an issue for you at home and you haven’t gotten into a routine or schedule at home, ask your daycare for a copy of their schedule. Keeping your children on the same type of schedule at home, as they do at daycare can help with their sleeping habits.

Maybe you’re thinking that your child actually sleeps better at home. This is also a possibility. You drop your kid off at daycare only to get a report that they didn’t sleep well or were very restless. This can be a real struggle when you get home in the evening and have a grumpy child who hasn’t napped all day. Again, consider your child’s sleep habits at home. Perhaps you have a different schedule at home than at daycare. Or maybe your child sleeps best in a dark environment with little to no noise. As you know, in daycare, the environment is much different. Therefore, your little ones could have a hard time adjusting to the louder, more chaotic environment at daycare. To help with this, you could provide the daycare with a sound machine or a stuffed animal or item from home to help daycare feel more like their normal sleep routine.

Just as your mattress is an important part of getting a good night’s sleep, remember it is also important for your little one’s. Infants typically need a firm surface, while toddlers can use a more plush or cushioned sleeping surface. Now, we know you don’t have much control of this at daycare, but at home you have the freedom to choose a great mattress for your child, one that will help them fall asleep and stay asleep longer, without all the tossing and turning.