Make a Comfy Place for Quiet Time
For Parents continued...
Kids sometimes need time alone to calm down. Help your child find a spot that he can retreat to that is quiet, private, and safe to make his comfy place. Encourage your child to go to his comfy place when he needs some quiet time or is overwhelmed.
Some parents may want to establish a routine quiet time that their child spends in his comfy place every day. Here are some tips for how to make that successful.
- Schedule quiet time for the same time every day so your child gets used to the routine. A good time is after lunch. That way your child will start associating the end of lunch with the start of quiet time in his comfy place.
- Let your child get ready to rest, just like at bedtime. Let her get a drink of water, use the bathroom, and anything else that could prompt her to leave her comfy place.
- Start with just a few minutes if you need to and build to 10 minutes. You can continue to increase the time from there. You may choose to set a timer so your child can tell when quiet time is over.
- You and your child may both find it helpful for you to share the first part of the quiet time together. Play quietly with a toy together in her comfy place or sing together. Spending these minutes together as your child gets settled can help keep her from "wanting you" while she is being quiet in her comfy place.
- Tell your child how great she did when quiet time is over. Remind her that she'll get quiet time tomorrow.
What to Teach Your Child: Quiet Time Is Good for You
Help your child identify her comfy place as a spot where she is surrounded by comfortable things and where she can rest her mind as well as her body. Encourage her to use her quiet time in her comfy place to use her imagination. Teach her some relaxation skills to play with there, like imagining peaceful, happy scenes such as fields of flowers.
Of course, you don't want to use your child's comfy place as a place for punishment, like you would a time-out zone. However, when your child is upset, crying hard, or angry, you may suggest that she go to her comfy place to be quiet, think, and relax her mind. You are teaching your child how to respond to stress in a healthy way -- a skill that she will use her whole life.