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I cannot get my 4  year old son to follow an early bedtime routine.He deliberately delays,asks food to eat and still wants to play,or study or talk .
Tags: Parenting
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Hello,
    its very hard for any 4 year old to close his eyes and step away from all the fun he could be having if he stays up. You can approach this problem in 2 ways, one of which is to make sure to build a relaxing routine into the evening that is the same every night. Kids need up to an hour of quiet time to settle down before bed, and things like exciting tv, active play or video games need to stop well before so his body can calm enough for sleep. Also avoid caffine and chocolate for at least 4 hrs prior to bedtime. Set a routine of books, bath, and cuddling that is predicable and consistent every night.

    Aside from that, you can teach your child what you want him to actually do (I assume you want him to put pajamas on, brush teeth, get into bed, remain in bed etc.--its helpful to actually make a list of what behaviors you WANT to see and focus on these as the goals). Once you set goals, start practicing each step during the day. Reward any progress towards going to bed with hugs, praise, stickers etc. and over time he will start doing more of what you want and less of what you don't. There's a great description of how to get kids doing the behaviors you want instead of those you do not in the book The Kazdin Method by Alan Kazdin.

Best Wishes
Rebecca Resnik
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