The Big Idea: Bedtime routines help children relax so they can get the sleep they need.
Elmo Isn’t Sleepy
Elmo’s getting ready for bed with his dad, Louie. He’s finished his usual routine (taking a bath, putting on pajamas, and brushing his teeth). Finally, it’s time for their bedtime lullaby. But Elmo isn’t sleepy!
Watch the video together. On your own, notice the milestones that Elmo, who is 3½ , is showing (developmental milestones are things children can do by a given age, such as crawling, walking, running, and jumping; healthy routines can help children reach their milestones!).
- He can count to 10.
- He can remember words to familiar songs.
After watching, you might:
- Play the song at the beginning again and sing it together. Can children describe what a routine is, and name some of their own bedtime routines? (A routine is a list of things you do the same way every day.)
- Talk together about children’s own bedtime routines. Do they have most of the bedtime routines that Elmo has? Do they have some different routines? What helps them fall asleep?
- Discuss what new songs or books children might like to share at bedtime. Perhaps they would like to share a song of their own.
- Ask children why they think Elmo’s dad fell asleep. (Grown-ups work hard all day, so they can be really tired by bedtime!)
- Explain why it’s important to get lots of sleep: Our minds and bodies need rest so we have energy to play and learn the next day. (Sleep is like a bath for the brain, or like shutting down a computer and restarting it the next day!) Children’s brains grow fast, so they need more rest than grown-ups. Three-and-a-half-year-old Elmo needs 10 to 13 hours of sleep each night (until age 5).