A good night’s sleep is essential to children’s health and wellbeing, yet – as many of you guys will know – convincing your little ones to get their ’40 winks’ is never easy. So much so, my husband and I call our two sons, Oliver, 6, and Xander, 3, ‘the sleep thieves’.
Thank goodness for The Sky Kids app which has transformed bedtime! More on that in detail in this post soon.
First, let me tell you a bit more about my background and our new sleep routine here!
…I’ve always been used to surviving on little sleep. When I worked as a filmmaker, I’d often spend up to 12 or more hours on set on shoot days, meaning only get 4-5 hours per night. However, in comparison to parenting, that now feels like a luxury! My poor eye bags hey!
Our kids are not the greatest of sleepers to be honest, although the youngest is better than his big brother and he’s been that way since he was a baby.
Getting them to bed is difficult (they have crazy energy levels like their Mama) and once they’re both asleep, one of them, or both will most likely wake at around 4 or 5 am and find themselves in mine and Peter’s bed! Thank goodness for the King Size is all I can say!
My mum reminds me this is payback time as I was exactly the same as a kid. Sorry Mum!
Apparently, I never wanted to sleep and only slept solo when I turned 7! Eek!
Oh, and let me not forget to mention that Oliver and Xander, like their Mama before them, are adept at using every excuse in the book to get out of going to bed too. ‘It’s too dark.’ ‘We’re hungry’. ‘We’re thirsty’ ‘There are monsters in the cupboard’… The list goes on and on and on…
Just go to sleep already!
We recently installed black out blinds to keep the sun out during the summer months as we were finding it tough to get them to sleep when it’s still bright daylight outside at 10 pm. And (naughtily – oops!) Peter and I have started telling a few little white lies to get them into bed. Our favourite being that Santa Claus is watching (all year round) because as we all know nothing motivates a young child like presents on Christmas morning!
Our favourite being that Santa Claus is watching (all year round) which admittedly works better during the winter time!
My eldest Oliver is also losing his baby teeth though so we’ve started saying that if he wants the tooth fairy to leave him something under his pillow he’ll need to go to sleep. So far, so good!
Toothless wonder below!
We also once told them after a day of face-painting that they would both turn into superheroes the next day if they went sleep; however, when they awoke the next morning minus the powers we ended up with two stroppy tots instead. Beware of the lies you tell folks!
We have found, not surprisingly, that the most effective method for a good night’s sleep is simply establishing a regular pre-bedtime routine. Routines are an essential part of kids’ development and although it might be a struggle at first, the rewards are worth it.
Consistency is key, so with our two, we start their routine from teatime.
First, we fill their tummies with a nutritious, hearty dinner (protein, veg (often grown ourselves), good quality carbs and dairy), then get them out in the garden to exercise a bit before a bath together and time to wind down for bed, watching their favourite kids programmes then reading before bed.
…And, this is where the marvellous Sky Kids app comes in and in the last month we’ve been using it, it has made a BIG difference to our routine!
Its brand new sleep mode function literally is a parent’s BFF. It allows you to limit the amount of screen time putting you firmly in control of how much TV your kids can watch and when they should be switching off.
When the sleep mode is turned on, kids get a five-minute warning that it’s nearly rest time and then five minutes later their favourite Sky Buddy appears, alerting them that it’s time to go to sleep! The Sky Buddy will then snooze on the screen until it’s time to wake up again in the morning. Genius huh?!
We’ve found that the brand sleep mode new function has really helped our own kids learn to switch off at bedtime so Peter and I can actually get a good night’s sleep! Once the boys finish watching a short programme, it’s time for a book then bed.
The Sky Kids app is packed full of amazing content for kids, It includes thousands of shows and features 16 of the 20 most popular kids shows, such as Nick Jr.’s Paw Patrol, Boomerang’s Scooby Doo, CBeebies’ Octonauts, Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time and even a personal fave from when I was a kid, Morph!
All the content is specifically developed for young kids, so there won’t be any inappropriate shows for young eyes and parents can filter content depending on age making it a fun and safe way for kids to watch their favourite shows. Brilliantly, you can also download the content offline too so kids can watch anytime making it perfect for long car and train journeys or when you venture to restaurants!
We love it!
The Sky Kids app is free for all Sky families and can be downloaded on Apple and Android tablets. Head to the Sky website here for more information and details on how to download it.
This is a commissioned post but all words and opinions are my own and honest.