As a parent of a toddler, you ‘re probably wondering when is the right time for your child’s move from crib to bed? After all, you want this to be a permanent transition so you can remove the crib from the room as soon as possible.
Believe it or not, the average time for a child’s move from crib to bed is between three- to- four-years old. If doing it before then, you run the risk of losing sleep over a cranky child who is not ready for the change. Your child will need to understand that she must stay in her bed. If she doesn’t have that impulse control, a bed won’t work.
Reasons Not to Make Your Child’s Move from Crib to Bed
- You will be removing the confines of the crib bars. Your child may start leaving her bed in the middle of the night and waking you so she can sleep in your bed.
- Your little one is doing fine in her crib. It provides enough room for her to sleep comfortably.
- Your child has not developed a regular sleep routine.
- You are in the middle of potty-training which is enough of a change for your toddler at one time.
- You are moving to a new home – too much change at one time.
Reasons It’s Time to Make Your Child’s Move from Crib to Bed
- Your child is past two-years-old and the crib is becoming more of a safety issue. You don’t want your child climbing out of her crib and risk a dangerous fall.
- Your child is over two-years-old and you are expecting another baby and need the crib. If your child is younger, you may need two cribs in the room for awhile.
- Your three-year-old is too big for her crib preventing her from getting a comfortable night’s rest.
Get the Right Bed to Make Your Child’s Move from Crib to Bed Successful
You might consider transitioning your child to a toddler bed rather than a twin-sized bed if she is smaller. She will feel much more comfortable in a bed of this size. However, if your child is too big for a crib, it’s wise to get a twin-sized bed.
How to Make Your Child’s Move from Crib to Bed Successful
- Toddler-proof your child’s bedroom. Remember she will have free access to everything in her room once she is no longer behind the crib bars. You don’t want her tripping during the night, playing with electrical cords, or pulling a light-weight dresser on top of her.
- Prepare your toddler for the change by talking about it. Let her know what’s going to happen and when. Remember that toddlers prefer routine and predictability. You will need to ease her into the transition. Talk about sleeping in a bed as something big girls do. Read a book about it.
- Dress her big bed to look welcoming and comfortable. Let her help you shop for kid’s bed linens. Include some of your toddler’s favorite stuffed animals on the bed.
- Leave the crib in the room for a few weeks if your toddler is having trouble adjusting. She will have choices rather than be forced into a larger bed with no say in the matter. By doing this, your young child will feel that she has more control over the switch and will adapt better.
- Be prepared for nightly visits. Be firm and take your child back to his bed without showing any emotion. If she starts crying you will need to ignore it. After awhile, your toddler will stop leaving her bed when she sees that her crying isn’t getting her anything.
- Realize that this change won’t happen overnight. Be patient, consistent and firm and soon everyone in your home will be dreaming happily.
How did you make your child’s move from crib to bed a dream come true rather than a nightmare?
Chappell Schools of Jacksonville, Florida has been providing child care and preschool learning programs for 55+ years. Our educational programs address the TOTAL child – cognitively, emotionally, physically, and socially. We pride ourselves on being voted one of the “Top 50 For-Profit Child Care Organizations in North America.” Visit one of our eight centers to see how we make learning fun by contacting us at 904.739.1279. To get more child care tips, please “Like” our Facebook page.