How To Respond When Your Child Asks You “Why Do I Have To Go To Sleep?”

Children are naturally curious and asking questions is one of the ways in which they learn and discover the world around them, gaining information and developing critical thinking skills.

Whilst adults know that sleep is necessary for our bodies and minds, often we cannot explain why children need to go to sleep in a way that children understand. It is crucial that children receive enough sleep and a lack of sleep impacts children in many ways.

Some responses for you to consider when your child asks you why they need to sleep:

  • You’re learning so much every day. This is a good response when your child asks why they must go to bed before you. Ask them to share what that they’ve learnt that day – and you can reply by saying: ‘You have learnt so much today, you need to sleep to give your brain a chance to save it all.’
  • Sleep helps your body grow strong. You can tell your child that sleep helps their body grow strong to do more activities that they enjoy.
  • Sleeping helps you learn. When a child is tired, they can’t concentrate and enjoy the learning occurring at school. If they’ve had enough sleep, their brains will be recharged and ready to participate in an exciting day of discovery and exploration at school.