Friday, December 23, 2016

Can He Nap At Daycare As A Toddler?

Posted by theboat On December 23, 2016 3 comments
Now that he's moved into the room for toddlers, have his napping habits changed?

Napping Habits Vs Time

There are a number of ways to break up his napping data and I've written a couple of posts on them already. Since I have roughly a year of data now, a first thought is to look at his napping habits vs month over the year since napping habits change as babies age. Below is that data:

As I was watching it come in, I'd thought maybe he was just getting older and spending less time napping, but there was a spell in the fall where he was not napping at all most days and coming home exhausted. He switched rooms right after that so we got new data. As you can see, his nap time also spikes right at the end so maybe the room determines how long he naps?

Napping Habits Vs Room

He's in his third room at daycare now. The rough description of the three rooms and their napping situations is:
  • Infant room: Babies are aged 6 weeks to ~6 months (when they can stay seated and roll on their own). They nap completely on demand and if they fall asleep on the floor the teacher moves them to a crib. All babies nap at different times, the lights stay on the entire day, and babies play while other babies nap. Typically ~5 babies in the room at a time.

  • Crawling room: Babies are aged ~6 months to ~12 months. They nap on demand though the teachers try to encourage them to get one morning and one afternoon nap. Babies in this room typically crawl for most of the time that they're in the room, and typically ~8 babies are in the room at a time. They have to nap in their cribs and the teachers move them to their cribs if they fall asleep somewhere else. The lights stay on the entire day and babies play while other babies nap.

  • Toddler room: Babies are aged ~12 months to ~18 months. They start walking around the time they enter this room typically (one outlier started walking at 7 months so she joined this room at 9 months). All of them share a nap schedule and it is from roughly 12:00 pm to roughly 2:00 pm. They have to remain quiet during this period and the lights are turned off. Each baby sleeps in a mat on the floor and has a blanket available if they want it (see picture at the top of the post).

You can see from the histograms for each room that he napped poorly in the crawler room, and below are the averages for each room:

As you can see, there is a clear dip for the crawling room. That room typically had more babies than the infant room and they were very active. Our baby is very sensitive to noise (he's still scared of my sneezes) and very curious, so my gut is that he could only sleep in the crawling room if every other baby was also sleeping. Combined with the previous analysis that found that his nap length went down as the number of babies went up, I think I can reach the obvious conclusion that having a room with fewer distractions leads to better sleep.

As a final note...I have 44 records from the infant room, 64 records from the crawling room, and 25 records from the toddler room. 


  1. Absolutely agree, but sometimes it is extremely difficult to pick up decent bed for a baby... Such a pain..

    Sophie van der Linden