Somewhere in the later part of the toddler years you will realize it is time to make that transition to their very first big kid bed. However, sometimes parents find themselves eager to make this happen much sooner than necessary. This creates a whole other drama for themselves with the relentlessness of their child running up and down the hallways and not wanting to sleep.

So, how long is it best to keep your toddler in a crib? I say, as long as possible if the child is not too long, not too big, hasn’t started to climb over the rail, is not potty trained, then why rush? If you are seeing all the above, then it is time. Here is a guide to make it go smoothly.

Step-By-Step Guide

    • Moving on up should be made into a big deal. After all, it is a graduation of some sorts, so make it fun! This might be the time that they get to choose some fun bedding.


    • Make sure you attach a guard rail so that they do not roll out of the bed. If younger than 6 years old they really should be on the bottom of a bunk bed if this is the bed choice.


    • Make a big deal out of the design of your child’s new bedroom, you will be moving things around and your child may want to take more ownership of the bedroom by adding colorful drawings they have done themselves to put up as artwork on their wall. Indeed do let them show their friends the new big boy bedroom they have. Making them feel confident in the transition. Some children get over-anxious with change so based on your child’s temperament be more or less energetic in your enthusiasm.


    • Consider the timing of when this transition takes place. Do not combine the transition with a new life event for example, moving house, or the birth of a new sibling. In that situation, you would do a couple months in advance of the new arrival.


    • Sticking to your bedtime routine is absolutely key as nothing should change that ritual.


    • Re-evaluate your child-proofing with respects to stairwells, windows, cords for blinds, double checking everything.


    • Finally, don’t forget to acknowledge their first day of achievement. It will make them feel good about themselves too!

Copywritten by Jo Frost

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