Musical beds is a common nocturnal pastime in our household. The night starts out right with both children asleep in their own beds, but by the morning, usually at least one of them is in my bed and I am usually either on the lounge or in one of their beds.
Is there any way to get those darned children to stay asleep … in their own rooms … in their own beds … for the entire night?
Yes. Yes there is. And here’s how it’s done.
Sure, there are logical ways you can get your kids to sleep in their own rooms. Letting them choose the bedding so they are excited about the bed is one way. Creating a reward chart so they receive a small treat or sticker every night they sleep in their bed is another great idea. And of course, there’s always the exhausting bleary-eyed shuffle where you lug them back to their own bed.
But we like these innovative ideas much better.
1. The LEGO landmine
Lace the front entrance to your bedroom with LEGO pieces. Hopefully as soon as they step on one, they will turn back to their own beds.
2. Wig out
Buy a wig similar to your own hair and place it on the pillow beside your child. That way he may just think you are asleep beside him.
3. Door dilemmas
Tape maths equations to the front of your bedroom door. Tell the kids they have to get the equations right in order to come in.
Alternatively, tape a list of chores to the doorway that the kids have to tear away. The only way they can enter is if they rip open one of the chores and promise to actually complete it in the morning. Of course, this only works with kids who can read …
4. Sleep Wars
Sleep with a Darth Vader mask on. The combination of the loud noise and the creepy mask may just be enough to convince them it’s best to sleep in their own rooms.
5. Obstacle course of comfort
Set up an obstacle course of soft cushions, pillows and blankets in the hallway from their room to yours. If the space is soft enough, they may just fall asleep on the way to your bed. Sure, you may find them asleep in the hallway … but, hey, at least your bed is empty!
6. Co-sleep … in style
Consider a DIY co-sleeping bed like this clever family did. They manage to fit five children and two adults all in the same bed. Crazy, yes, but for some, co-sleeping is the only way to get a decent night’s rest.
This article was originally published on November 3, 2015.