Back-to-School Tips: Set a Sleep Schedule

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August 2, 2023 by HCDE Communications

Getting a good night’s sleep is important at any time of the year, but it’s especially critical for your children when transitioning from summer fun to structured learning. Sleep-deficient children might become overly active and face challenges paying attention, causing their performance in the classroom to suffer.  

Set a sleep schedule.

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) offers the following tips for how to get a healthful night’s sleep.  

  • Establish a reasonable bedtime. Most elementary school children should be in bed by 9 p.m. Children who require more sleep might need to hit the hay earlier.
  • Avoid caffeinated beverages and foods high in sugar in the late afternoon and evening. This may be obvious to some, but caffeine is a stimulant that can last up to 8 hours, causing difficulty falling asleep. Withholding sugar and caffeine from kids can also lead to other health benefits.
  • Allow plenty of time to wind down before bed. Children should not be bringing their smartphones or tablets to bed with them. They need about an hour of downtime to prepare to fall asleep. Relaxing activities such as taking a bath or reading a story can help children fall asleep more easily.

Enjoy two classic bedtime stories from the Scholastic Parent Store for kids under 10.  

“The Giving Tree,” written and illustrated by Shel Silverstein, is about a tree that gives her entire self to the person she loves. The inspirational parable introduces children to the beauty of self-sacrifice and generosity.  

“Amelia Bedelia Means Business” by Herman Parish and illustrated by Lynne Avril introduces elementary students to chapter books with face-paced stories, friends, and funny situations.  

Source: Healthy Sleep Habits. National Institutes of Health. March 24, 2022

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