For many children, school nap times are the first time they will sleep away from home. This doesn’t seem like such a huge thing, but consider your child’s position. We are naturally more vulnerable while we sleep. Our guards are down and we’re generally lying flat on our backs or our sides: leaving us in no position to defend ourselves. So imagine doing this with twenty or more near strangers lying all around you! Fortunately, there are steps you can take to ensure that nap time is a restful time.
First and foremost, choose a sleeping mat that provides snugness and comfort. The feel of a blanket wrapped around him and soft cushioning underneath will help your child feel more at home and less ill at ease during his first few nap-times. Our line of nap mats by Wildkin come in a variety of colors and designs, but more importantly, they offer superb comfort. They also come with matching blankets for him to snuggle up to if he feels uneasy.
Next, send him to school with a comfort object. This can be blanket, stuffed animal, or even a pacifier if the child is young enough. Having something to remind him of home and security will make the transition lots easier by reminding him that he can rely on you and your judgment.
You should also take special care to get him acquainted with his teacher before school actually starts. Take him with you to orientation and let him ask her questions about the class, work they will do, and projects. Letting the two of them interact in this way will help him feel secure with her even when you’re not there with him.
Let him pick out his sleeping mat (to a degree). Getting to have a say so in the print and design will help him feel more in control of his surrounding. Wildkin offers a host of design options for boys and girls, so you’ll have no problem finding something your child will love.
Finally, let him know that if he gets scared he can talk to his teacher for help. If you think that your child may have an issue with nap time (or any other new situation for that matter) speak with his teacher ahead of time and decide on a good course of action. Odds are, just knowing he has a support to fall back on will be enough to give him the security he needs to make it through nap-time and the rest of the school day.