Can I be honest? Since my older two kids have started school and become independent readers, I have let our read-aloud routine slip big time. But that’s not fair to my 4-year-old J.C., and it sure isn’t helping his literacy and language development, either. Besides, even my two big kids still love being read to.
A Bedtime Routine to Encourage Reading!
Plus, I’ve already shared how we’ve struggled with J.C.’s tooth brushing routine. So we need some serious help adding reading to our child’s bedtime routine.
It’s time to get our bedtime routine back in order and make sure we’re including good toothbrushing and reading each night before bed. Here’s how I’m doing it…
How to Set Up a Child’s Bedtime Routine
I created an interactive Bedtime Routine Chart with a visual schedule of a bedtime routine. And, I’ve made it available as a FREE printable for you to try with your child, too!
First, Get the Free Bedtime Routine Printable
Download and print the bedtime routine chart printable onto heavy cardstock. If you don’t have cardstock, you can glue the routine strips to a Manila folder or cereal box cardboard. Help your child cut out all of the bedtime visual schedule pieces.
Together with your child, identify and discuss each square bedtime routine step, then put them in order of how you would like your child’s bedtime routine.
Have your child help glue or tape the square bedtime routine steps, in order from left to right, onto bedtime visual schedule strip #1. Continue, in order from left to right, onto bedtime visual schedule strip #2, if necessary, and glue #2 onto the back of #1.
Show your child how to clip a clothespin onto the first square step on the #1 side of her new bedtime routine chart and do that bedtime task. Once complete, have her move the clothespin to the next square step and so that task. Have her continue, moving the clothespin along the steps of her bedtime routine as she completes them. If she gets to the end of side #1 and there are steps on side #2, have her flip the routine chart over and repeat until all bedtime routine steps are complete!
Of course, I included the essential steps, “Brush & Floss Teeth” and “Read a Book”, as steps leading up to “Turn Out Lights.”
If your little one struggles with toothbrushing, try a toothbrush with her favorite cartoon character. Or try teaching them about their dental health with these printable Kids Dental Health Coloring Pages.
Also, have her help choose her own children’s books to read at bedtime. Here are some of our favorite kids’ books.