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How to Use Bedtime to Connect with Your Kids

Posted by Lauren Osborne on May 8, 2018 9:29:00 AM

tips for connecting with your child at bedtime 

Technology is beginning to take its toll on quality time. There are screens in restaurants, screens at school, screens at home, screens in strollers and even now, parents can buy screens for cribs. They are everywhere.

 When you go out to eat now, instead of seeing families around the table conversing, laughing and enjoying one another, you see instead family members absorbed in their screens.

 Relationships are dwindling.

 Face to face time is dwindling.

 Connection is dwindling.

 This is the polar opposite of how I want to raise my son.  The Lord is clear in scripture that He desires to spend one on one time with us. He loves being in relationship with us. That being true, it would behoove us to be in meaningful relationships with our families. This is how God has designed us.

 God created us to live in community, not in technology.

Because of this recent negative phenomenon, bedtime has become a precious priority for us each evening.

 As a single mom, I consider bedtime a sacred space for my son and I to connect by:

  • Reading together- As a first grade teacher, a love for books runs through my veins, so of course I want to pass that down to my son! Each night he chooses 1-3 books he can read out loud to me. This gives him the opportunity to practice his literacy and me the opportunity to simply sit and listen while encouraging his confidence and rigor of reading. Next, I read a chapter out of our chosen novel. This gives him the opportunity to curl up under his covers for a good “boy” book about spies and wars and the like. His mind can decompress from the day as he leaves our world for just a little bit to be in the fantastic realm of our book.

bedtime rituals for children


  • Talking about his 6-year-old life- Questions and comments like, “Mom, why did Eve eat the apple from the tree?” or “My feelings were hurt at school today,” and “I can’t wait to see Pops and Honey this weekend!” These are all examples of conversations we have had together at bedtime. Having time to sit down and talk to your child sounds easy, but some days this is our only time to do this. Sometimes I’ll start the conversation by asking, “What was the saddest part of your day?” And then, “What was the best part of your day?” Open-ended questions like this can really ignite some fun dialogue.
  • Praying together – This time is never wasted. We read a small piece of our Bible each night and we pray for our day, our friends, our safety, and for the Lord to speak to both of us. This is also when we talk about how the Lord speaks, through His word and through prayer. It is that hallowed time when just the two of us have the opportunity to relax and be still with the Lord. 

This all happens in the evening when his body is still, but his emotional mind is still awake.  This is our time to link our lives, our time to listen and discover new things about each other or simply enjoy the things we already know. It is our time to bond through finger plays, to have hard conversations about honesty, and to laugh when we tell silly jokes or make silly faces.

Whether we had a great day, busy day, or rough day, the end of our day will remain unchanged, a time free from distractions and technology.  Our bedtimes are set apart for special talks, sharing spiritual truths, laughter and connection.

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Topics: Parenting