Many a parent drags them self through the day while their child sleeps peacefully in the daylight hours. What is it that keeps them awake at night depriving you of your rest? You may have heard about sleep clocks - children are particularly susceptable to them (but not all!) so they are worth a try if you are still ripping your hair out in frustration.
Their are a few sleep clocks on the market now, with the Gro Clock possibly being the first. While this has proved to be difficult to obtain in the USA, it has led to a myriad of similar offerings to help your child get to sleep and stay asleep. One example would be the “OK to Wake!" alarm clock and nightlight.
It can be even more difficult for a toddler to know when they can get up in the long summer days when it is light for so long. The bug shape OK to Wake! helps keep your child in bed until the right time with the colour changing night light and he child quickly learns that green means, go, it's OK to wake up! The idea is that the child learns it is only OK to Wake when the clock is a certain colour and smiling. There is also a “nap timer" that can be used without disrupting the normal alarm and night time settings.
The OK to Wake also comes in the shape of an adorable owl that is portable, comes with music and talks. Both are around $30.
Many parents are skeptical about how or why these clocks work, but there is no doubt for many they do. The manufacturers say it works because toddlers enjoy the feeling of accomplishing something and a job well done. This is a simple task that can be carried out every day and it is much easier to offer positive reinforcement when you've had a good night's sleep! Reports say that it was easy to teach and could be adapted for use when they are able to distinguish numbers on the clock face.
Here is a user genuine user review for the OK to Wake!.
"I'm not really sure what magic spell this clock has over my daughter, but she stays in her room until the moment it turns green.
On May 22nd, we moved my daughter (who is just over 2.5 years old) to a toddler bed.
Luckily she stayed in bed at night with no problem, but in the morning she came into our room as soon as she woke up. The first morning it was 5:40am and the second morning it was 6:00am (Normally we didn't get her out of her crib until at least 6:30am and sometimes if she woke up early she would fall back asleep). But in a toddler bed, it seemed she would never stay in her bed in the morning long enough to fall back asleep.
I was tired and needed a solution. I looked on Amazon and found this clock. I paid for Amazon Prime just so I could get $3 1-day shipping (Yes, I wanted the clock that badly). The next night when it arrived, we made a VERY big deal about my daughter having her very own alarm clock. She was very excited. And we showed her how it turned a pretty green color and we even did a couple practices showing her how the clock would glow green. We explained a couple of times that in the morning, when her clock turned green, she could come get mommy and daddy up. We told her “Green means go!" And we went to bed. I'll be honest, I didn't really think it would work - especially not the first night. But I sure hoped it would! Sure enough, the next morning I heard her start to wake up at 6:08am, BUT she did not come in our room. I waited in my bed just listening. More time passed and I just heard her moving and occasionally talking to herself. At 6:30am I heard her say, “My clock turned green. " And then she came bounding into our room excitedly chattering about her clock and how it turned green. We made a big deal about how proud we were that she waited in her room until her clock turned green and what a big girl she is. For the last 2 weeks it's worked like magic. One morning, she woke up crying at 5:40am and would not go back to sleep. She didn't get out of bed, though. I went in to her room to comfort her and she was still in her bed. I lied down on the floor next to her and told her we couldn't leave her room until the clock turned green. I fell back asleep (I'm not sure if my daughter did), but at 6:30am she leaned over her bed and said, “My clock turned green!" I said, “Oh yes, it did! Green means go - we can get up!" And we both went down stairs. I think that reinforcing the issue that one time made a difference.
For me, the invisible net this clock weaves over my daughter's bed is definitely worth the cost!"
The other recommended sleep clock for children is the “My Tot Clock" which is more expensive at $60. Works similarly to the OK to Wake but includes bedtime stories, lullabies, wake music and white noise settings and a built in timer for timed activities such as potty training and picking up toys.
This is what a skeptic said about the My Tot Clock and her children.
"I wanted to write a review for people like me. I am a good parent, but we operate a little more by the moment in hour house so sometimes very regimented toys and activities just don't work for our family because our existence is so hectic that we just don't have time to be consistent. So, I bought this clock with 3 things in mind. First, my 4-year old son REALLY wanted a clock. He had just recently become enamored with clocks in general. Second, we were having a getting out of bed multiple times, and ending up in bed with me issue, mostly with my 2 year-old son. Thirdly, the 2-year old was starting to act as though he might have an issue with the dark and leaving their dimmable light on low was the only way to begin to get him in the mood to negotiate bed time (and you know you have trouble when you are bargaining at bed time with your 2 year-old. ) What I was concerned about was that we would get this, not be able to use it easily and therefore not consistently and it would be another really good idea that just did not work for us.
Now, we have had our clock for less than a week and it has already transformed bed time and sleeping habits in our house. The only major committment I had to make was to insist that the boys (mostly the little guy) get back in bed when they woke up at night, and not take the easy way out and allow them to get in bed with me. I never had to bother with my 4 year-old. He was so excited about his clock and caught on to all the meanings of the colors right away, so he understood and abided by the new rules of his own accord. Night one, my little guy got out of bed 8 times between going to bed and getting up in the morning. I quicly and calmly took him back to his bed and said “the clock is still blue, it's still bedtime, you can get up in the morning when the clock is yellow. " He would fuss, and we would do it again a few minutes later. Night two he got up 3 times. Night three and four he got up 2 times and yesterday he got up only one time, 10 minutes before the clock would have turned yellow for wake up time anyway. He is a very stubborn little boy, so the fact that this worked with him is amazing!"
So, if you are looking for a sleep clock - children actually seem to like them! Be a skeptic by all means, but do consider trying them out before dismissing them altogether. You may be surprised!