Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Putting the kids to bed

Bedtime has been one of the absolute BEST experiences we've had since the boys joined our family. From day 1, there have been virtually no "I don't want to go to bed yet" arguments nor any of those incidents you've seen on Supernanny where a kid gets out of bed like 87 times before they finally fall asleep and the parents have a complete nervous breakdown.

On school nights, the boys go to bed at 7:30 while on weekends we've upped it to 9. Our oldest has the option of going to bed at 8:00 during the week but he seems to like going to bed with his brothers.

Our routine is as follows:

  1. Brush teeth and floss. George picked up toothbrushes for them that have lights that let them know when 2 minutes are up. They love them and hopefully we won't have to deal with any cavities in the future.
  2. Read a bedtime story. Usually it's a 5 minute fairy tale, or a nursery rhyme. Lately we've been getting into chapter books, which they seem to get a kick out of. 
  3. Thumbs up / Thumbs down. Our case worker suggested we spend a few minutes asking the boys to reflect on their day and to give one "thumbs up" moment and one "thumbs down" moment. The idea behind this is to get them to really think about what they did well and alternatively, what they didn't do well. This is absolutely brilliant! You can literally feel the energy in the room change as the boys think. And 9 times out of 10, they'll give an honest answer (for example, a thumbs down was when boy #1 hit boy #2.) Of course, we sometimes get answers like "My thumbs down is that today isn't Christmas." 
  4. We then tuck the boys in, give lots of kisses and say goodnight. 
The only problem, and it's not really a huge problem, is that they like to talk when the lights go out. Unfortunately it would sometimes go on for 30 minutes or more. So we came up with a solution. Boy #3 was given a watch for his birthday from Grandma and Grandpa. Before leaving their room, we look at the watch together and say something like "when the big hand is on the 10, you must stop talking." He knows he's in charge of this and we think the responsibility he's been given has made a huge difference because we no longer here them talking! 

Now if we could only get them to sleep in past 7 am on weekends. 

Do you have any tips or tricks around bedtime? Would love to hear them. 

- R&G

3 comments:

Gregory & Ron said...

My oldest brings out his pokemon cards and shows our youngest boy how to play using the basic cards. since the boys are in bunk beds in the same room beside our room we can hear when they are up (and the oldest will come get his little sister out of the crib if she is up and put her in the exersaucer with them to keep her occupied) and if there are any problems, but we still get a bit of time to ourselves to sleep in.

Our worker is just happy to see the youngest boy bonding so well with his brother

Great to here that things are going well Guys! keep up updated

G & R

Enzo said...

730 & 9! Wow! You dont need tips...you need to write a book!

Robert & George said...

Only if you promise to buy a copy Enzo!