Is it just me or has this year already gone by way too quickly?
I hope you agree with me because I am about to remind you that Daylight Saving Time (DST) is fast approaching. Shamelessly, I am still putting away Christmas decorations over here. How is DST already here?
Well, I guess since it’s almost here we have to embrace it and get ready to be zombies for a few weeks. Because remember, we lose an hour since we “Spring Forward.” Not to worry though because today I am sharing 7 tips to help your child (and you) adjust to daylight saving time. So keep reading if you wanna you are here for the good stuff.
But before we dive into the tips, I want to mention something super exciting that comes with this time change. Some of us feel like we are sleeping in!
Let me explain…
…if you have a child that wakes up at 6:00 a.m. then I have good news! Your 6:00 a.m. wakeup is about to become the new 7:00 a.m.
Jumping for joy over here for you!
7 Tips to Help Your Kids Adjust to Daylight Saving Time
- GET SOME SUN. Sun exposure first thing in the morning and throughout the day will help our bodies adjust to the new time change. Plus, sunshine is a mood booster allowing us to be a little nicer even after just losing an hour of precious sleep.
- START PRACTICING AN EARLY BEDTIME. Simply put your child to sleep 15 minutes earlier the Friday night before DST. Then wake them up 30 minutes earlier (unless they beat you to it) on Saturday and put them to bed 30 minutes earlier that night. Then on Sunday, put them to bed at their usual bedtime. Simple, right? NOPE. Remember, if it does not work out like this it is okay. Just slowly adjust them to the new schedule across the next week or so. In fact, it may take 1-2 weeks for our body’s circadian rhythm to balance out to reflect the new time change.
- DON’T HAVE PLANS ON THE WEEKENDS. Try to stay on schedule the weekend of DST and the following weekend. Keep things pretty simple and easy not only for your children but also for yourself.
- WAKE YOUR CHILD UP AT THEIR USUAL WAKE-UP TIME ON SUNDAY. As much as you would like them to sleep in that extra 30-60 minutes on Sunday, don’t let them. When 7:00 a.m. hits (or whatever time they usually wake up) wake them up within 20-30 minutes of that time. And remember, if you have a child that wakes up earlier than you would like then let them sleep. They should wake up at a reasonable time now after the time change. Crossing my fingers for you!
- KEEP THE ROOM DARK. Using blackout curtains will prevent any extra sun from seeping into their rooms in the morning and evening hours. Since the sun will be out longer, you may want to even cover those windows with something they can’t open and say “Mommy (or Daddy) it’s not sleep time yet because the sun is still out. It’s time to play.” Don’t let this happen to you! I love using these blinds for that reason. You can tape them to the window panel and no extra light will come into the room.
- HAVE A GOOD BEDTIME ROUTINE. Have a consistent bedtime routine with a wind-down time. Remove any stimulation and excitement including screen time about 1-2 hours before bedtime if possible. The younger the child, the larger the gap between screen time and bedtime. Continue to push the bedtime routine up as you shift the bedtime times throughout the week.
- USE SIGNALS. If you have a toddler or older child, having a digital clock in their room helps to get them to understand time as well as when it is bedtime and wake-up time. You can even use color systems to indicate when it’s time to wake up and sleep. I love using the HATCH sound machine for this reason. Be sure to shift the wakeup times on the clock as well throughout the transition week to help them adjust to the new time change.
Are you looking forward to Daylight Saving Time? Let me know below.
I personally look forward to springing forward because I really do not adjust the kids’ schedule too much since summertime is approaching in a few months. This allows for later bedtimes and evenings full of family fun time!
Falling back on the other hand is a true struggle. More on that when that time comes.