Posted in: How To, Baby & Kids

10 Tips for Transitioning Your Kid to a Big Kids Bed

Tips for Transitioning Your Kid to a Big Kids Bed, photo of the corner of a kids bedroom, a kids bed with floral sheets and heart-shaped cushion next to a pink table with a pink lamp and open books.Tips for Transitioning Your Kid to a Big Kids Bed, photo of the corner of a kids bedroom, a kids bed with floral sheets and heart-shaped cushion next to a pink table with a pink lamp and open books.

In the wise words of Simba from Lion King, “I just can’t wait to be king” — or in this case, can’t wait to be the proud new owner of a big kid’s bed. 

Your little one transitioning to a big bed is something parents anticipate for a long time, but even so, when the moment arrives, it’s a bit of a pinch-yourself moment filled with reflection and excitement. 

With big beds come big responsibilities — for little ones and parents alike — in ensuring a smooth transition and cementing a successful bedtime routine right from the get-go. 

Without further ado, let’s jump into the world of big beds, set up a bed worthy of a Disney movie, and ensure your little one feels safe, comfortable and ready to make the move to their new bed. 

1. Timing is key

For the most part, children tend to move from a cot to a bed between 18 months to three and a half years old. While there isn’t really a locked-in moving date, Red Nose recommends transitioning your little one as soon as they begin climbing the cot and looking like they may succeed. 

Otherwise, it’s best to watch your child and follow their cues; the inspiration for a big bed might be based on a favourite TV show or from wanting to be just like their older sibling or favourite older cousin. 

It’s important to build up a mood of excitement surrounding the big bed, as once it’s time to transition, a quick transition is best; this will be easier if your child is stoked about their new bed. 

2. Create a safe space

While we say big kid bed, there are a few caveats. While your little one is still so small and precious, there are still a few precautions to take to keep them safe. 

There are a few options for making the next move — some parents choose to purchase a toddler's bed, usually a shorter bed minimising the risk of falls; some parents simply put the mattress on the floor (away from walls to ensure their child doesn’t get stuck). And finally, some parents will choose to transition straight to an adult's bed, clearing the surrounding area of furniture or hard objects and laying down padding in case of falls. For the best advice, we recommend turning to Red Nose

One final safety note: remember that transitioning your little one out of a cot means they have full access to your space. This may mean you need to move things around in their rooms and any other spaces they have access to. Think about potential hazards such as electrical outlets and appliances, heaters, cords from blinds, and make sure any furniture that could topple is secured to the wall.

3. The practical purchases

While it’s true that there is a whole lot of whimsical bed dressing to come, first, we need to lay down the foundations. 

Accidents happen and will be a natural part of the transition — so preparing the bed for said accidents is a good idea, making cleaning up easy. Our Soft Blend mattress and pillow protectors come with a fun star print, keeping the role of protecting lighthearted and fun. Or, if you want an all-in-one solution, we recommend our Kids Protector And Sheet Set, complete with a mattress and pillow protector, fitted sheet and pillowcase. 

Of course, there are also pillows and quilts; we stock a range of comfortable options for your little one to have the dreamiest night’s sleep. Again, we’ve made it easy for you with the Kids My First Bed Set, complete with a pillow and quilt. 

Moving your toddler into a big bed. A child stands in a bedroom looking out of a circular window at trees, next to them is a table with a lamp and books, as well as a bed with green and blue printed sheets and a house-shaped cushionMoving your toddler into a big bed. A child stands in a bedroom looking out of a circular window at trees, next to them is a table with a lamp and books, as well as a bed with green and blue printed sheets and a house-shaped cushion

4. Get your little one involved

To help keep the spirit alive, it’s a great idea to let your little one be a part of the decision-making process regarding everything they need to move to a big bed

Encouraging them to choose their favourite colours for their bed sheets, pillows, and quilts is a fun way to create a more immersive experience. With Sheridan’s range of playful and colourful bedding options, you will find the perfect designs to help your little one embrace their new sleeping space. 

5. Put the bed in the same position as the cot

This may seem trivial, but as parents will know, children are very sensitive to change. So keeping everything else the same can help to make the transition more smooth sailing. 

This includes keeping the nightly routine the same and not changing too many things at once in the bedroom. Once your little one has the hang of the new bed, feel free to wear your interior designer cap and make all the stylish changes as they transition into an older and wiser little person. 

6. Invite familiarity into the space 

It can be comforting having something from home with you when you are travelling, warming up a hotel room with a sense of home. Children are also fans of this sentiment, so bring along something that helps to create a familiar and comforting environment. Perhaps a favourite blanket makes the move with them, the two of them feeling right at home in the new space. 

7. Add some personality 

It is a child’s room, after all — so invite a sense of adventure into the space. One way to do that is with Sheridan’s Adventure Kids Travel Blanket. This fun design is perfect for sprucing up the bed's end and adding colour to your little one's space. 

Let loose with mixing and matching, enjoy and experiment with colour.

Kids sleep transition. A close up photo of an orange heart-shaped cushion on top of a blue sheet with small hearts printed on it.Kids sleep transition. A close up photo of an orange heart-shaped cushion on top of a blue sheet with small hearts printed on it.

8. Create a bedroom routine 

Establishing a bedroom routine right from the start will make a huge difference to your little one feeling settled in their new space. Whether you’re establishing a new one or keeping up tradition, a well-oiled bedroom routine is a stable foundation for all things sleep. (P.S. this applies to parents too). 

So get your books out, listen to soothing tunes, or settle in for your nightly theatrical delivery of a bedtime story and send your little one off to a night full of sweet dreams. 

9. Celebrate the milestone 

Establishing a bedroom routine right from the start will make a huge difference to your little one feeling settled in their new space. Whether you’re establishing a new one or keeping up tradition, a well-oiled bedroom routine is a stable foundation for all things sleep. (P.S. this applies to parents too).

So get your books out, listen to soothing tunes, or settle in for your nightly theatrical delivery of a bedtime story and send your little one off to a night full of sweet dreams. 

10. Be patient 

Good things take time; there might be a bit of a transition period, but that’s part of the journey (or the climb, if you will). Some children experience a minor regress in their sleeping routine with the transition; as we said earlier, children have their finger on the pulse when it comes to detecting change and can be a little sensitive around changing their routine. 

But with patience, love and time, all things will work out. You'll soon be saying "Hakuna Matata" to any bedtime woes.

10 months ago