Wednesday, July 7, 2010

The 7 O'Clock Bedtime

The 7 O'Clock Bedtime: Early to bed, early to rise, makes a child healthy, playful, and wiseThe 7 O'Clock Bedtime: Early to bed, early to rise, makes a child healthy, playful, and wise by Inda Schaenen is a good book.  While it was not exactly all that I was hoping it would be it did have several good points on helping your children go to bed earlier.  It was also packed with a lot of research on the benefits of an early bedtime for children.  In order to achieve the 7 o'clock bedtime, your family will have to alter their lifestyle completely to work around your child's bedtime.  I agree that most Americans are not getting enough sleep, especially children.  However, depending on the ages of your children getting them all to sleep by 7 o'clock is not always feasible.

I liked her concept of an earlier bedtime a lot.  One thing I thought was somewhat disturbing was she only bathes her kids once a week to help get them in bed earlier except if she thinks they are really dirty.  I know there are a lot of cultures who do not bath very often but once a week doesn't sound that great.  I think I would rather start the nighttime routine earlier or aim to have my child in bed by 7:30 so he's clean.  Or if giving your children a bath at night is too hard to work it, why not bathe them in the morning?

Also, I was hoping for a few more tips on getting a young child to sleep earlier.  I have a one year old and the earliest we have been able to get him to sleep is 7:30pm.  She used the Ferber method with her children while my family uses the attached parenting method.  Is there really no other way to get your child to sleep earlier than letting them cry it out?  Especially babies.  There are lots of ways to help your child go to sleep without leaving your young baby to cry themselves to sleep.

Overall I think this is a good read and I agree with her philosophy overall that our kids need more sleep.  I guess it's like anything, if you want to achieve something you have to sacrifice something else and not plan anything too late in the day or evening.  Not to mention there are some families that are unable to get their children to bed by 7pm because of the parents' work schedule.  If you look at the bottom line, children need more sleep, then I think however you achieve the maximum amount of sleep for your child is great.


  1. Hi. I also constantly struglle with this issue of having a routine and putting my daughter to sleep. Somehow its been extremely difficult to stick to the time.

    And yes - thanks for following my blog. Welcome to my small world!!

  2. We always went to bed earlier than all the other kids when I was being raised. I never understood it, but, now--as an adult--I can see the wisdom in it, not only for the CHILD's well-being, but also the parents' well-being. Parents need time to be just husband and wife and people. Sure, during that time, ya gotta keep your ear out for emergencies with your children. I just don't like situations when parents don't get to be humans at all.
    have you ever read the book "how to speak to kids so they understand?" I can't remember who wrote it, but it looks good so far.
    hey, my niece just gave birth this week. Can you think of a good book to give her for Christmas about being a good parent? She doesn't care about God so that can't be the focus of the book, but is there one out there where she can learn Godly lessons without realizing what she is learning?
    anyway, good book review. :)
    Loralee :)

  3. Hi Loralee,

    I am sorry I have not responded before now. I agree with everything you said.

    As far as a parenting book goes, I highly recommend Perfect Parenting by Elizabeth Pantley. It contains a dictionary of 1,000 parenting tips to help parents find the right answers for many problems such as discipline and behavior issues such as lying, to getting your kids to do their chores. Each tip offers several solutions. I will probably write a more extensive review on this book in the near future.