Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Sleep - according to The Daily Mail

Having just popped over to Unplug your kids (see sidebar for link), I see that readers are challenged to produce a project on the topic of sleep. Well, I have not done a project but wanted to report a little thing that has gone on in our house over the last two days.
Yesterday I bought The Daily Mail. (Yeah, I know - no taste!). There was little article about a study (yeah, another study) on the effects of an early and strict bedtime routine for young children. Apparently, children who have regular bedtimes are better at languages, reading and maths than those who do not. And the earlier a child goes to bed the quicker they are at picking things up. The researchers recommend that pre-school children get a minimum of 11 hours per night or risk falling behind.
I read this article to Honor-May and Henry at dinner time yesterday. HM wanted to go to bed straight away so that she could be good in her maths lesson. Today, her teacher came up to me after school to tell me how well she got on in the lesson, being one of the few kids who 'got it'! What a coincidence!
Henry also wanted to go straight to bed... but I could hear him running around after!
Well. I usually take these studies with a pinch of salt. But I think it is common sense to make sure the littlies get to bed early... if only to give us parents a rest!


  1. I love this! I have always been very strict with my kids about bedtime (more for my own mental health than theirs though). Now it is nice to know that the children are benefiting too. I am so glad you linked to this for the "Sleep" Unplugged Project. Thank you!

    PS. I just linked to this post on my blog.

  2. I have read studies that discuss how sleep deprivation in our littles actually resembles ADHD. That has been my driving force for strict sleeping patterns in our home. (not to mention nice quiet time for mom and dad) It is unfortunate to think of the struggles kiddos are having with attention and side effects of drugs and frustrations of parents and teachers, when what they really need is SLEEP.

  3. Kari. I have definitely noticed how my children get more active or 'wired', I think is a good description, the closer we get to bedtime. It seems likely some parents might be confused when their children behave like this and assume that they are not tired enough to go to sleep. There have been times, perhaps when we have been to a party when we have arrived home and the children seem anything but ready to sleep, but as soon as they are put to bed, in the usual routine, they are fast asleep 5 minutes later. So I can see the logic in the studies you mention.
    Mealtimes are important too, I think. My children behave like lunatics if we don't stick to our normal routine. (Actually, so do I!)

  4. Yes,yes! Put the children to bed early and sew!

    My two eldest really needed a strick early bed time or I sure paid for it the next day!

    The third child has always slept very little and not got cranky. We have actually kept the same sleeping hours(myself and Olivia). since she was born except she cat napped for 20min increments occasionally

    Needless to say there was not much sewing done in this house after hours!