As far as regular bedtimes go, most of us fall into the “More or Less” camp.
I’ll admit: I wasn’t sure what to vote. I’d say we fall somewhere between “More or Less” regular and “No. We have a routine, but…”
We try to have the boys in bed around 8 pm. That’s as much for our sanity as their sleep needs. According to WebMD, my 3- and 6-year-olds need 11 to 12 hours of sleep a night; my 8-year-old, 10 to 11 hours. Considering that my 6- and 8-year-olds are usually up by 7, that’s about right. The 3-year-old — well, he’s a whole ‘nother story. He like to think he doesn’t need a nap anymore, but he does. 8 pm to 6 am just isn’t enough, and his behavior usually shows it.
But real life often interferes. It’s summer, and as I wrote a few days ago, with summer comes softball. Four nights a week, we’re at a ball game. And whether it’s one of the boys’ games (which generally run from 6-8 pm) or one of Dad’s games (which could be at either 6:30, 7:30 or 8:30), 8:00 bedtime just ain’t happening.
And that’s OK. It took me a long, long time to get to this point, but I’ve finally learned/realized that the time they spend at the ball park (or, say, at Grandma and Grandpa’s house, helping with the garden) is essential too.
The kids LOVE going to Daddy’s games. Really, it’s practically their idea of heaven: treats, playgrounds, minimal supervision and other kids to play with. The homeschool Mom in me heartily approves. Who ever said homeschooled kids lack socialization never saw my boys playing Ghost in the Graveyard with 15 other kids after dark at a ballfield.
I haven’t taken a completely unschooling approach to sleep just yet. But I’m getting closer.
Bottom line? You’ve got to do what works for you.
What’s bedtime like at your house?
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