7 Tips for Transitioning from Nap Time to Quiet Time

7 Tips for Transitioning from Nap Time to Quiet Time | Baby Chick

7 Tips for Transitioning from Nap Time to Quiet Time

When my daughter started to show signs of dropping her nap, I went into full-on panic mode. If you’re anything like me, nap time is the only time during the day that you can actually think and get anything productive done. I really think they should make nap time productivity an olympic sport because I would win gold every year. So when my kid decided to grow out of her nap, I may or may not have hyperventilated a little.

I decided very quickly that I was going to have none of it and I immediately began to implement a quiet time in place of nap time. I wasn’t sure if my plan to keep her in her room for a couple hours every day would actually work, but I was desperate and had to give it a shot. Lucky for me, my daughter took to it rather well and we have been happily having quiet time in lieu of nap time for over a year now. Here are some of my best tips for starting this practice in your own home.

1. Set a schedule and stick to it.

This should be implemented when you have a napper on your hands, but if you haven’t already done it, start now. For me, nap/quiet time is directly after lunch so it usually starts around 12:30. My kids know that after lunch, we have our rest time and there’s no negotiations or arguing about it. Sure, I’ll still get some push back some days, but for the most part my kids are used to (and thrive on) our routine, so nap/quiet time happens relatively easily.

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2. Set expectations ahead of time.

When you first start implementing quiet time instead of nap time, make sure your toddler knows what you expect. For instance, I would tell my daughter, “It is time for rest. You don’t have to go to sleep, but you have to stay in your room and play quietly.” I would then set her up with her activities (see below) and set her special clock to change colors when her quiet time was over (also see below) so she knew what she was allowed to play with and when she was allowed to come out of her room.

3. Set up quiet time activities.

For my daughter, she has a dollhouse and books in her room. These are her go-to activities for quiet time. She also has an “art cart” where I have organized her coloring books and colored pencils and crayons. I also bought her a small boombox (yeah, they still make them!) and gave her a handful of children’s CDs and she loves to listen to her music (quietly) and dance. She rotates through these activities during her rest time and stays happy as a clam.

4. Be flexible.

There will be days when quiet time doesn’t go as planned or it gets interrupted. This is life and you have to just roll with the punches sometimes. There have been plenty of days in my house when my daughter just will not settle into her quiet time. Those days, I lower my own expectations a bit and either give her the iPad or let her watch a bit of a movie in the playroom. It’s probably not the best parenting, but mama needs to get stuff done!

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5. Get a special clock.

One of the best purchases I ever made was the Tot Clock. I have one for each of my children. This is a special digital clock that you can set up to turn blue when it’s nap or night time and then turn yellow when it’s time to wake up. Not only does this little clock make my life easier during quiet time, it’s changed my life in the mornings. My kids know that even if they wake up when their clock is blue (like at 5:45 a.m.) they are not allowed to get out of bed until it turns yellow (at 7:00 a.m.). More often than not, my early riser son will wake up and see his clock is blue so he will lie back down and FALL BACK ASLEEP until the clock is yellow. I kid you not, the Tot Clock has saved my sanity more than I can tell you. It is worth every single penny.

6. Don’t skip weekends.

I know it’s tempting to skip quiet time during weekends because, if your weekends are anything like mine, there are things to do and places to go. It’s easy to think that since your toddler doesn’t really nap anyway, they’ll be fine staying out all day. And on some days, that might be true, but try not to make a habit of it. Even though your toddler may not need a nap, they still need that rest time every day. If they are constantly go go going and overstimulated by activity on the weekends, it will be much harder for you to keep a consistent quiet time schedule during the week.

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7. Offer lots of praise after each quiet time.

After each successfully completed quiet time, offer your toddler a lot of praise for being such a big boy/girl and playing quietly in his/her room. This is important especially in the beginning when quiet time is a new concept. If your toddler needs to see evidence of his successes, set up a sticker chart and let them choose and place a sticker on the chart after every good quiet time. When the chart is filled up, perhaps take them to the store to choose a new quiet time toy or activity.

While it can be scary for moms to transition from nap time to quiet time, implementing these tips will help to smooth out the process and make it easier on mom and toddler alike. Be patient and consistent with your toddler, set them up with fun, quiet play activities and give lots of praise for a job well done.

Good luck, mama!

About the Author /

Cheyenne is an attorney, writer, speaker and blogger with a slight obsession for home decor, red wine, and good coffee. Cheyenne’s blog, Sense & Serendipity, focuses on inspiring others to create a home well loved and a life well lived. Cheyenne lives in San Marcos, Texas with her two children, Aislin and Hawkins.

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No, the blood won't drain out of baby and go backwards into the placenta.⁠
No, your baby is not more likely to get sick from jaundice.⁠
Yes, your baby will still be getting oxygen while they figure out breathing, especially important if they need resuscitation.⁠
Yes, your baby will have better iron levels for the first year of their life.⁠
Look at how thick and engorged this cord still is at 4 and 18 minutes after baby was born. Just imagine how much blood baby would have lost if the cord had been clamped immediately, or at 60 seconds, 90 seconds, or 3 minutes! The placenta was expelled immediately before the 18 minute photo was taken. The pulse in the cord could still be felt even AFTER THE PLACENTA HAD BEEN DELIVERED! The cord was finally clamped and cut more than an hour after birth at 73 minutes. ❤️⁠
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Here are some tips to combat isolation:⁠
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1️⃣ Get outside when possible.⁠
2️⃣ Video chat with friends/family.⁠
3️⃣ Join a virtual group.⁠
4️⃣ Invite someone to come over.⁠
5️⃣ Find a local mom's group.⁠
6️⃣ Listen to the radio or a podcast (it's interesting how this can make us feel connected with others)⁠
7️⃣ Run an errand--even grabbing a coffee via drive-thru can feel good.⁠
8️⃣ Get to know your neighbors.⁠
What would you add to the list?⁠
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Flying on a plane with your little one for the first time can be terrifying. Are they going to cry the whole time? How will they handle the airport, the turbulence and the landing? Well we have some tips that will help prepare you for your flight with your kids. Here's what to do to have a more enjoyable experience 😊 {Link in bio!}⁠
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