1) Cold Turkey: When the time changes, switch to the new time right away. Switch all meals, activities, and naps to the new time as well. Wake up times may be a bit off for a few days but don’t worry – they’ll adjust. And remember – never start the day before 6am. Anything earlier can throw off your schedule for the day. If your child has a fairly easy temperament, adjustment should be quick and painless.
2) Work up to it: This approach is helpful for children that may be more sensitive to being overtired and changes in schedules, or children who tend wake up early. Start adjusting four days before the time change by moving bedtime and wake up time fifteen minutes later each day. You can even go more slowly if you’d prefer – start sooner and move the times by five or ten minutes at a time. At the new wake up time, turn the lights on and expose your child to natural light to help reset their internal clock.
3) Fix it afterwards: Wait until the day of the time change and adjust the child’s schedule over the next few days. This method does involve a few early mornings, but works well with children that tend to get over-tired and have trouble making it to the new bedtime
By the way, these methods work the same way in reverse, when it’s time to “spring forward” and move the clocks ahead.
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