how to drop the morning nap

How to Drop the Morning Nap Easily

Toddlers can be unpredictable, and their naps are even more so! Typically, we drop the morning nap around 12-15 months of age. This can be tricky, and we’re here to help navigate this new norm.

Nine days is typically how long it takes a child to transition from two naps a day to one nap a day.

It takes a solid nine days to drop the morning nap, and in that time span, you will be tempted to do the following:

  • Turn back
  • Start bedtime early for fussy-pants
  • Reconsider your decision to have kids

These are all normal responses to the struggle of the transition. But stick with it because our job is to stay consistent even when they are not. And it will pay off!!

We are right there with you! We all have crazy days when we run around and lose track of time. It’s real life, and we will not ruin it all with extra playtime in the sunshine or a late start to our afternoon. Just try to stay as consistent as possible.

Here are the keys to success:

  • They will be tired in the morning when they had naptime before.
    • Plan 9 activities to keep them awake for each morning of the 9 transition days.
  • They may not sleep great at the designated naptime even though you KNOW that they need to sleep.
    • Naptime starts at the same time each day and is non-optional for a minimum of 1 ½ hours and a maximum of 3 hours – from when the nap started, not when they fell asleep.
  • If they did not nap well, keep them awake until the regular bedtime.
    • Remember those 9 activities you planned for morning nap distraction?
      • Use those again to get your little one to the right bedtime.
    • This is not for the faint-hearted, nor is it permanent. You can do it!
  • We are setting the 24-hour clock.
    • They do not “make up” for lost sleep.
    • Keep the morning wake-up time, the naptime, and the bedtime solid.

The key is, we don’t go to bed early, we don’t give up; we get right back on schedule and stay consistent! And before you know it, that beautiful, illusive 2-3 hour predictable afternoon nap will settle into the daily routine. Wait for it – because when it appears, you may want a few more of these adorable kids. Oh, they are so cute when they are sleeping! And that, dear friends, is how babies are made.

Check out our Toddler Online Video Course for more toddler tips and resources! The 15 months to 4 years of age is the most dynamic time with your child. This course offers the Moms On Call No-Nonsense Toddler Seminar plus an in-depth look at each profile covered under the SMART Paradigm, answers to frequently asked questions asked by parents of toddlers, additional resources reinforcing the information provided in this course, and access to the MOC Basics Videos and the popular MOC Pep Talks.

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