How to Start Quiet Time with a Toddler who is No Longer Napping

With three kids so close in age, I need some time during the day to rest or to catch up on stuff if needed. Our oldest (almost four) recently stopped napping so we are establishing a quiet time in his room so that I still have some time to myself every day without resorting to too much screen time. I find that I am able to be a more patient mom when I have this time during the day. Below are how we are implementing this with him:

  1. Gradually lengthen the time. If you have never done quiet time with your child, you can start with a short amount of time maybe even just 15 minutes. Gradually add 10-15 minutes a day until they are up to at least an hour. We currently do about an hour to an hour and a half for quiet time.
  2. Use a Hatch light. We have this Hatch rest light that comes on at the end of quiet time. I can set programs on my phone to come on the same time every day or I can manually turn it on if quiet time needs to end earlier for some reason. We let our son occasionally change up what color comes on. He gets excited about getting to choose the color.
  3. Praise them for staying in their room – If they stay in their room until the light comes on, make sure to praise them! Maybe even have a reward. For our son, he knows after quiet time he gets to watch a show and have a snack.
  4. Have rotating quiet time activities – I have clear plastic buckets with different activities that are only played with during quiet time. We rotate through them throughout the week so they stay exciting and fun. Checkout this post about some of my son’s favorite quiet time activities. He gets to choose which activity he wants that day so it is extra exciting for him.
  5. Talk it up. I always believe in “prepping” my toddler for any changes that are about to occur. So for the week prior to implementing quiet time, I made it sound exciting and explained that we would have special toys that only came out during this time. And that he would get to play in his room while his sisters napped until his Hatch light turned on.
  6. Remind them that if they get tired, they can turn off the light and take a nap. Thankfully, a few times a week, my son still naps. He will start out with his light on and play for 20-30 minutes but then when he gets tired he turns his light off and climbs into bed for a short nap.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: