how long do people let there three year olds nap for?

Terasa - posted on 02/14/2011 ( 28 moms have responded )




just wondering if people let there 3 year olds nap for given time (basically) and how long that is or if people let there young ones sleep as long as they want for naps


JuLeah - posted on 02/14/2011




I let my child sleep as long and often as she wanted. She was active and interested in life. If she was sleeping, I assumed her little body and her growing mind needed the rest. It is only when sleeping that we grow, repair, recover from the stresses we put on our bodies while awake.

[deleted account]

I let my 3 year-old daughter nap for however long she wants... sometimes it's up to 3 hours, and sometimes she doesn't nap at all. Last month she grew 2 inches in 2 weeks and she napped for 3-4 hours every day of those 2 weeks; this month she hasn't napped for the last week at all and she's doing fine (she also hasn't grown at all). She hit a growth spurt and needed the extra energy, so I let her body recharge in the natural way. Now she's done with her growth spurt and her body doesn't need to recharge in the middle fo the day anymore. Fine by me. :)

Molly - posted on 02/16/2011




I have twin boys they wake around 7 or 730 I try to nap them around 2:00 2:30 if they are not asleep by 3:30 I give up I only let them sleep until 4:30. If we have had a busy day and they have been active all day they usually take a great nap. if we grocery shop and they are in the car a lot and not moving much No nap. their bedtime is 8:30 9:00 latest. that's what works for us. I know daycare legally have to give kids a rest time of at least 20 minutes until kids are 5 years old.They have started linking obesity in kids to lack of sleep I thnk both Mommy and kids need a little quiet time ;)

Medic - posted on 02/15/2011




My son is almost 4.5 and his naps have come and gone the past year just depending on what is going on. He goes to school M-F in the AM for 4 hours so usually he falls asleep sometime in the afternoon for anywhere from 30min to 3 hours so I just let him sleep. If he is tired enough to tell me and willingly lay down wherever that may be I assume he needs it. He is always in bed at 7 even when he sleeps till 5 or 530. My one year old tends to sleep most of the day and easily 14 hours at night. With her I can tell she is growing.

Apryl - posted on 02/14/2011




I always let my child sleep two to three hours depending on what time they go to sleep at night and how long you want them to sleep in. A three year old still needs 12 to 14 hours of sleep per day.

This conversation has been closed to further comments


View replies by

Sarah - posted on 01/12/2013




A rule of thumb from our midwife friend is to not let them sleep past 4 pm as it will make bed time really hard! otherwise during the day anywhere from none to 3 1/2 hours.

Carmen - posted on 02/16/2011




I've let my kids sleep when they want to sleep for the most part. if it get's longer than three hours though I try to wake them (open the door etc) so they can still wake up on there own.

Karla - posted on 02/15/2011




As long as he wants, usually 2-3 hours. I haven't tried waking him in a LONG time. When I did, he was absolutely inconsolable. So now I put him down between 1-2, sleeps until 4-5. Back to bed at 8:30-9, but he often lays in bed and talks to himself for 1-2 hours. Usually wakes up 7-7:30. On average he gets 11-12 hours of total sleep per day.

Leslie - posted on 02/15/2011




i think 3 hours is plenty long enough..however, my 3 year old doesnt nap at all. If she does take a nap its never over 1.5 hours..unless shes sick then she may sleep off and on all day..your the mom u decide..nothing is wrong if your the mommy!!!!

[deleted account]

I'm sorry Lisa. The girls WOULD have quit napping right at 2, but I couldn't handle 2 year old twins for 12 hours straight w/ NO break.... hence why I drove them to sleep every single day for 6 months... and one of the reasons I am in NO hurry to wean my son. He won't nap if he doesn't fall asleep while I'm driving or nursing him. I'm surprised she won't nap at all since she's still nursing... THAT would suck!

Jenn - posted on 02/15/2011




My son stopped napping just after he turned 3. But before that I would only let him nap for 2 hours max - otherwise he wouldn't go to bed at night.

Minnie - posted on 02/15/2011





Uuuuuuuuuh Teresa....Adelaide has officially given up naps- and not even 2 1/2 yet! AAAAAHHHHH! This child is a monkey on PCP.

[deleted account]

My son isn't quite 3 yet (about 6 more weeks), but unless I HAVE to wake him up for some specific reason.... I almost always let him sleep as long as he wants. He doesn't nap every day (most of them still though), but will nap anywhere from 10 minutes to over 3 hours. He tends to sleep 9-10 hours/night no matter how much or little he naps during the day, so I just let him be.

His twin sisters (9 now) quit napping at 2.5 and that was only after I drove them to sleep every naptime for 6 months straight.....

Robin - posted on 02/15/2011




My 3 yr. old usually sleeps for 1-1.5 hours. However that tends to make for a very long night. I prefer to let her sleep for about45 min and then get her up and moving.

Sherri - posted on 02/15/2011




At 3 as long as he wants, at 4 we limited it to 1hr in the afternoon. I am hoping he outgrows them this year as he will be 5 but he is a boy who loves his sleep and still sleeps 12hrs a night.

Minnie - posted on 02/15/2011




Nap? What is this -Nap- thing you speak of? I know not of such a term...

Megan - posted on 02/15/2011




My daughter doesnt take naps...just because she wont go to bed at night till...11 12 oclock!

Anastasia - posted on 02/15/2011




This is that critical stage:

This is the preschool years of your child, and he/she still needs a lot of neurons and physical developments. Nap time is still important.

If your toddler challenge or fights the instruction or activity of napping change its name but the purpose stays the same. If your toddler finds it difficult to take a nap, call it something else for example: book time or quite time. Nap time makes it clear what you expect from them and they will fight it. Quiet time or book time is less threatening.

Remember they burn a lot of energy and they need all the rest they can get. Even if they don’t want it. This is the stage in your toddlers live when they start negotiating there needs. It may seem reasonable to them and funny or inappropriate to you. This is how they test the water. We all did. But at the end of the day its your choice to decide what is the best for your child.

A few things I have notice of the twins.

• An afternoon nap is usually still needed by the 3-year-old.

• Fears of the dark, thunder, lightning, etc. are quite common at this age.

• Maintain a consistent bedtime and bedtime routine. .

• Read to your child when possible before "lights out."

The three-year-old is eager to please. It's a wonderful time to establish excellent lifelong habits, if parents have the patience!

During the third year of life a child typically:

• May sleep 10 to 12 hours at night

• Hops on one foot

• Walks a line

• Walks on tiptoes for a few steps

• Brushes teeth, washes hands, retrieves own drink

• Puts on shoes (no laces)

• Completes a six-piece puzzle

• Draws simple shapes

• Enjoys helping with household tasks

• Follows simple directions

• Plays spontaneously with two or three children

• Identifies some common colors

• Counts to three

• Enjoys "pretend" games such as playing house

• Wets the bed at night occasionally

• Uses the toilet often and may need help (boys may not be toilet trained until later this year)

• Feeds self completely using a fork and spoon and can butter bread with a knife.

• Speaks in three- to five-word sentences

With all this development, it is obvious that your toddler needs all the rest they can get.

Gillian - posted on 02/15/2011




i am a granny of a 3 year old i look after him during the week he never sleeps during the day wish he would

Chrissy - posted on 02/15/2011




I let my daughter sleep as long as she wants. Usually its only for like 2-3 hours though. If they fall asleep later in the day dont let them sleep to long casue they will be up later in the night.

Karen - posted on 02/15/2011




the three year olds i look after sleep for two hours and then i wake them, but you have to go with what works for you and your child and finding that balance might take a bit of experiamenting

Louise - posted on 02/15/2011




My daughter is 2 years 3 months and she gets put down for a nap at 12.30 and I wake her at 2.30pm because if I don't she does not go to sleep at bedtime. Sometimes she falls asleep straight away and gets two hours sleep and other times she sings away until 1pm and only gets 1.5 hours sleep. Depends on what time she gets up and what she has been up to during the day.

Iridescent - posted on 02/14/2011




Our first 3 YO gets to nap for about 30-45 minutes in the afternoon or she's running wild all night. Our second 3 YO gets to nap for 1-2 hours. Our third 3 YO gets to sleep for as long as she wants, which ranges from 2-4 hours. You have to base it on your child's needs and how they act as a result; too little makes them crabby, too much makes them wild at night.

Lesley - posted on 02/14/2011




i let my 2 year old nap two to three hours after he eats lunch. most of the time he wakes up around the 2 hour mark.

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms