Simple Steps to Prepare Kids for Daylight Savings Time

  • Starting a week prior to the shift, try putting your kids to bed 15 minutes earlier each night. This will result in adjusting to the one-hour change over 3-4 days rather than over just one night. Think of it like taking a slow road trip across time zones vs. jumping on a plane and going several time zones in a few hours.
  • Make the room as dark as possible during sleeping hours. You can hang blackout curtains to make it darker during the night time and then open the curtains in the morning and turn on the light. Visual cues are important to kids and their understanding of nighttime and daytime.
  • The day before, try to spend the majority of the day outside! Sunlight exposure, fresh air, and exercise can help kids fall asleep easier at night time.
  • Keep to your daily and nighttime routine. This can make the process easier to understand for kids, especially babies and toddlers who may not understand the concept of the time change by your words. Keep in mind that kids with developmental delays may have a harder time adjusting to the time change, so they may need extra time and patience. This is totally expected. Remember that sleep plays an important role in a child’s overall mood and behavior, so once they adjust to the time change, these should improve as well.