I noticed our youngest Evie getting very comfortable in Amelie’s bed yesterday and it made me realise we would soon be starting to think about moving her into a bed or taking the sides off her cot.
Here are my top tips for helping toddlers transition from a cot to a bed/cot with sides taken off
There are lots of good bed guards on the market we bought a Baby Dan one for Amelie but never ended up using it as she had a teepee bed on the floor. But for little ones in a higher toddler bed a bed guard will be really useful and for the little ones, it won’t seem too different from having the side of the cot there.
When you’re away a trick we’ve learned is to roll a towel, tuck it into the sheet and you have a cheap, easy bed guard – it really works!
Some people swear by stair gates on their little one’s doors. This isn’t something we did with Amelie as she was older when we moved her but I am definitely considering this for Evie. If you don’t have one on their bedroom doors make sure you have one at the top of the stairs!
We found a Gro clock worked really well for Amelie. We explained that when she saw the stars it was sleep time and when the sun rose she could come into our room. We’ll definitely get this out again for Evie.
Don’t give them a reaction
If they do wake up or keep walking out once you’ve put them to bed quietly lead them by the hand back to bed. Don’t give them a reaction, don’t negotiate, just quietly put them back. They’ll soon get bored if you keep repeating this. Just remember to set aside a few evenings when you make the move doing this!
Prepare with stories
There are so many good books to help children with transition stages. We find the Princess Polly books great for these things. We loved Princess Polly Potty and Princess Polly Big Bed can really help as well.
Books to read
I find giving my eldest a book to ‘read’ in bed really helps. We’ll read one or two together and then I’ll leave her with her favourite ones. I usually go in before bed and find books all over the bed but she’s asleep so it must work!
Make sure they’re exhausted
When you decide to move them into a big bed make sure they’re SHATTERED the first night so they fall asleep easily, this will help set the routine.
Change the bed totally to make it really exciting
We found making the change with our eldest easier by making her toddler bed REALLY exciting. We put up fairy lights and gave her sister the cot so she could have a teepee bed. The excitement of her bed and making it hers really helped with the transition I think.