Is your child getting enough sleep? Are you sure?

Most children do not get enough sleep – and that impacts their ability to learn.

Sleep is when your brain gets rid of all the detritus of the day, when your brain cleans itself, stores important memories, and gets ready for new information.  If a child’s brain does not have time to do all this – and more – that brain will not be functioning well the next day.

And that means less learning!

So how much sleep does your child need?  New research states that –

  • 3 – 5 year olds need 12 hours sleep each night
  • 6 – 8 year olds need between 10 and 12 hours
  • 8 – 12 year olds need 10 hours
  • 12 – 16 year olds need 9 – 10 hours sleep

That is a lot of sleep!

Young children need a good nighttime routine so that they go to bed with little fuss.  Older children may find it more difficult to get to bed at a reasonable hour.  Their sleep pattern changes.  Teenagers tend to need to sleep longer in the morning – that is why it is hard for them to wake up in time for school.  We torture our teenage kids by making them start school at 9a.m.

And late night screen time doesn’t help either.  Video games stimulate brains and stimulated brains don’t get chance to rest and clean themselves unready for the next day. The research says that even one night’s disruption to sleep can cause brain problems for several days.  That means less learning for several days!

So is your child getting enough sleep?   Are you making sure your child is ready to learn?



Patricia Porter

Dr. Patricia Porter is a Learning Skill Assessment Specialist & Speaker. Discover your Child's Learning Needs to Unlock their Full Potential.