When Asher was about 1.5, we had issues with him waking up too early in the morning & constantly asking for us to come & get him out of his crib. We didn’t allow him to get out of bed before 7am, but we didn’t know how to let him know when it was the right time.
I looked online for some suggestions, & all the ones I saw were about telling him, “when there’s a 7 at the front of the clock, you can get out of bed,” or, “set a clock radio to play music when it’s ok for him to get out of bed.”
Due to his age, the “read the clock” advice wasn’t going to work, and we didn’t want to wake him up if he was still sleeping at 7, so the music solution was impractical as well.
So, I decided to try putting a nightlight with a timer in his room, & I told him when the nightlight came on, then he could get out of bed. It worked like a charm. Occasionally he’d wake up too early & ask to get out of bed & we’d call back to him, “Is your nightlight on yet?” When Chancery was about 1.5 we put a nightlight on a timer in her room as well.
When we travel, we take the nightlights with us & when we change time zones, it makes it that much easier, since the kids know exactly when they can get up.
Now, at age 4, Asher still abides by the nightlight for night time & for naps. Sometimes he even helps us out when Chancery starts talking, by calling out to her, “It’s time to sleep, Chancery, and when your nightlight comes on Mummy or Daddy will come & get you!”
When we were in Alberta visiting PChad’s family, Asher had the opportunity to have a sleepover at a cousin’s house. At 7:30 all the other kids had been up & running around for awhile, but Asher was still in bed. Then Tara heard a tiny voice call out, “May I get up now?” We had sent Asher without his nightlight…
The other night, the kids were in bed, PChad was upstairs, and I was on my way up as well.
PChad called down to me, “Can you come & help me a second?”
From Asher’s room we heard a voice say, “Umm, Daddy, I can help you after my nightlight comes on, so I can get out of bed then.”
We could tell that he really wanted to help his daddy with whatever it was he needed help with, but he knew he wasn’t allowed out of bed yet.