With the loss of the coveted afternoon nap (sniff, sniff) I have tried to instigate a daily quiet time where my daughter (3) would ideally stay in her room for an hour or so and play quietly & independently (read/look at books, play with doll, draw/colour, puzzles etc).

The trouble is that I spend most of this time taking her back to her room & trying to get her to stay there. Eventually, I just give up and my precious hour of quiet time is more like 30 minutes of running up and down the stairs... and yes, I know that I have created a dangerous precedent that whining gets you out of quiet time :(

So, what do you do to make quiet time a success? And please, no suggestions of TV/DVD - I'm not anti-TV, but it has its place and that's not during independent play time!

asked 29 Oct '10, 03:59

Kate's gravatar image

accept rate: 20%

A few suggestions/thoughts (you maybe already trying some of these):

  • Is she used to playing in her room? If this is a new idea perhaps start by playing with her in her room and slowly get her used to it.
  • Instead of expecting it to be an hour start with 15 mins and slowly increase it to the hour, use a timer so she knows when it is time to come out.
  • Do you have a gate you can use across the door or close the door if she can't open it.
  • My kids play quietly but like to be near me so would it work for her to have her quiet time closer to you.
  • Not sure if this will work with your daughter but you could say you need to be in your room for an hour so each time she comes out then you stop the clock. It could take all afternoon to get to an hour.
  • Maybe keep some toys that only come out at this time of the day.
  • Reward her for staying in her room. In our family our 2.5 is still having a big sleep (2-3 hours) in the bedroom the kids share during this time our 4.5 has some TV time (about an hour) and then is expected to play quietly in the lounge (another hour). If he does this and enables me to get some things done then I do something with him before his sister wakes up.

I agree with you about losing the afternoon sleep time. I struggled with this when it happened to us. That is when I came up with the mixture of TV and quiet play by yourself time.


answered 29 Oct '10, 06:04

K%20D's gravatar image

accept rate: 13%

Great suggestions (especially the timer & shared quiet time suggestions)! I should have mentioned that we have had quiet time success before, just seemed to hit a rough patch lately. The last few days, I've given her a shorter "alone" quiet time after which she finishes up her quiet-time together with me. I have also left my watch so that she could see how much longer she has left in "alone time". Today I was back to a full hour of alone quiet time!

(05 Nov '10, 05:05) Kate

Glad things have improved. This week my 2 year old has been having shorter sleeps which takes some adjusting to.

(05 Nov '10, 06:54) K D

Although I've already accepted an answer, just thought I'd share this (timely) link from a site I follow:

No Time For Flash Cards: Quiet Time 1, 2, 3!


answered 05 Nov '10, 05:07

Kate's gravatar image

accept rate: 20%

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Asked: 29 Oct '10, 03:59

Seen: 4,278 times

Last updated: 05 Nov '10, 05:07