Getting 10+ Hours of Sleep Has a Huge Impact on Kindergarteners, Study Shows
It feels like school just let out, but before you know if you’ll be back-to-school shopping and getting your kids ready for a new year. But take note parents: school supplies aren’t all you’ll need to get prepped for a year of learning, specifically if you have an incoming kindergartner.
The journal Pediatrics has just published a new study that addresses the impact of sleep on children adjusting to formal schooling (aka kindergarten) and it’s pretty important. After studying 221 families over the course of four weeks, researchers found that those with 10+ hours of sleep nightly consistently “transitioned more successfully to K than children with less-regular sleeping patterns.”
Furthermore, establishing those sleep patterns a good five to six months ahead of the start of kindergarten is essential. That’s right, it’s time to get on your sleep train A-game.
You may be thinking, this isn’t new info. And sure, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) does suggest that kindergarteners get 10 to 13 hours of sleep daily. However, their guidance is over the course of the entire day and includes naps.
On the flip side, this study “suggests that the more consistently at least 10 hours of sleep occur during the night, the better is children’s adjustment.” Which makes sense, considering naps in kindergarten are usually no longer a thing (RIP 80’s nap time) and there’s no way to make up sleep if a child doesn’t get enough––because they’re in school.
The study used teachers who rated children using a variety of scales and found that those with more 10 or more hours of sleep were ranked more favorably. This included ratings on aggression, social competence, student–teacher relationships, classroom learning behaviors, school readiness and ADHD behavior. In a nutshell, when kids get the right amount of sleep everyone is happy and they are set up for success.
Even though school is around the corner, there’s no time like the present to set up a great bedtime routine. Grab a stalk of bedtime books, set a relaxing podcast and don’t forget a fun alarm clock to make waking up for school fun (well, as fun as it can be).