Upgrading Your Child’s Bedroom as They Age
Raising children can be a bittersweet experience. Babies are entirely dependent on you, but before you know it, they’re toddlers plunging into new adventures head-on. Kids are often eager for new ways to take care of themselves, and parents will want to give them age-appropriate adventures to honor that spirit.
One way to acknowledge the push-and-pull of childhood is to upgrade their bedroom as they grow. Changing the look and functionality of their space with their input is a perfect way to celebrate all of the little changes. Sleep is an important factor in childhood development, so it’s smart to dedicate time to building a great sleep space.
How to Design a Room that Can Age Up With Your Kids
When you’re ready to design a space that grows right alongside your kids, consider the following tips.
Invest in Appropriate Furniture
Invest in furniture that accommodates the changing needs of a child’s body as they grow. With space in the bedroom at a premium, you’ll want to keep track of when it is time to upgrade from a twin bed to a full-size mattress or even an extra-large twin bed.
A good night’s sleep can go a long way in preparing a child or even a teen to learn, engage, and feel confident day to day. Designing their room around sleep, and around their bed, can set them up for success at every age. Consider options when it comes to bunk beds vs loft beds.
Don’t Be Afraid To DIY
Not only is going the do-it-yourself route good for the pocketbook, it can also give you and your children a project to enjoy together.
Depending on their age, you can have them help you rearrange their bedroom furniture. Even if they can’t push items from one place to the other, they can tell you where they want them.
Other engaging projects could include repainting the walls or furniture. Make sure to involve your kids in picking the color scheme. Color affects mood in both children and adults.
Plan for Your Needs
As a parent, you know your child’s needs better than anyone. They may need to get a bigger bed for a more comfortable night’s rest. Or maybe they would benefit from a smaller bed so that they can have a room for a desk.
Even smaller changes can add up quickly, so It’s important to keep your budget in mind. Having a budget allows you to plan for the expenses involved in upgrading without overspending.
Knowing When It's Time To Age Up Your Kids Bedroom
There are several ways that your child might indicate that it’s time to age up their bedroom. This may happen naturally, when for example, a baby ages out of their crib and into a bed. Or, the change may be more nuanced, such as the transition a room may undergo during teenage years.
Communicating openly with your children about what their needs and wants are for their room will help keep a finger on the pulse of upcoming changes. As kids get older, you’ll want to respect their space and support their growth by letting them help guide the conversation around when they’re ready to change things up.
Zero to Three
This age group experiences a flurry of growth in a very short period of time. As babies grow, their desire to interact with the world often increases. Their natural curiosity leads them to explore without much regard for safety. This could present itself in the form of a toddler crawling out of their crib to play with their toys.
Once your child is ready to move from a crib to a bed, you’ll want to make some changes to their room. You can take the crib out, or if it’s an option with your crib model, transition it to a bed. Consider adding a small table and chairs for coloring or reading, and adding a sound machine to help encourage rest in a new-ish environment.
Three to Six
Like the zero-to-three category, the three-to-six period has several developmental stages as well. Some children fly through the changes, while others are more likely to look for your reassurance or to slow things down.
Don’t hesitate to give them space to adjust to the changes here. For example, they should be getting used to being out of the crib, but sleeping alone might not yet be entirely comfortable for them.
A good sign that they’re ready to “age up” their bedroom is a feeling of restlessness within the space. If they go from being sound sleepers to waking up more at night, they may need an environmental shift for better sleep and peace of mind.
Six to 10
Going to school often gives children a sense of autonomy and independence. When it comes to signs of growth, look for them to talk to you about their bedroom and what they’d like to see in it, especially as they develop new interests.
This is a great time for conversations about how their bedroom can best support their study habits, relaxation time, or hobbies. Encourage your child to personalize the space with posters, pictures, art, or anything that makes their room feel inviting and welcoming.
Getting into the middle school years is exciting, as it becomes less about needing direct comfort and more about stretching the limits of independence. At this point, open communication about what they can and cannot have in their bedroom is a good idea.
Transitioning to a larger bed can give older children a sense of comfort, independence, and trust. They may see that you’re willing to invest in their new bedroom, which, in turn, means that you’re willing to invest in them. They also may be able to take the larger bed with them to college or to their first apartment, which extends the potential benefits.
What To Expect When Transitioning Your Child’s Room
Even though changing up a space can be exciting, you will want to watch for signs of discomfort in your kids. Children are still maturing mentally, physically, and emotionally, and sometimes big changes take time to process.
Be prepared for disruptions to the family’s bedtime routine as you change their space. Younger children may feel frightened, while older children may seem fine with the changes. However, all ages will need to get used to a new bed and a new space.
One of the best ways to ease the transitioning process is to be as consistent as possible. Bedtime might become a bit bumpy for a while, but it won’t be that way forever. They will settle into the routine and be on to their next adventure.