Kids staying up late during the summer - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 47 Old 07-18-2011, 09:40 PM
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I don't know about anyone else, but around here, it is just too hot in the summer for the kids to get out and play any earlier than eight or nine.  So, yeah, I don't have a problem with my children staying up late and then sleeping in.  I mean, sitting here, right now, at 12:30 it is still 85 and hot and muggy.  YUCK!  And during "regular" hours, it is just unbearable.  But, we are night owls anyways.

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#32 of 47 Old 07-19-2011, 05:41 AM
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It looks like I have one of the non-popular responses, but here you go.  I don't generally let the kids stay up late.  First of all, we homeschool, and I don't do "summer break" per se.  We take week-long breaks throughout the year to break up the year better and to better fit how we want to celebrate holidays and vacations.  That said, during the traditional "summer break" time they do have a total of 4 weeks off.  My kids dd(14), ds(12), and ds(10) (I have a 2yo too, but she doesn't apply to this topic - lol), do sleep in if allowed.  But, if they get into the habit of staying up & getting up late it's super hard for them to get back to regular bedtime and wake up time.  Then I have crabby kids.  Also, if I let them stay up late and just start school late the next day, they get upset b/c then they're not done w/ their school stuff early enough to play all day.  When they were younger and in public school I didn't let them stay up either b/c they'd be crabby the next day.  Those things said, during a few summer weeks my kids also participate in a community theater where practices tend to go to 10/11 o'clock at night!  On those days I let the kids who are not needed at the particular practices stay up until the others get home.  Good luck with your decisions!

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#33 of 47 Old 07-19-2011, 07:13 AM
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We have all intentions of keeping up with our normal routine(bath at 7:30, in bed reading by 8) but like everyone else has said, we always just let it go in the summer bc we live in the midwest and so much of our days Nov-April are spent inside.

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#34 of 47 Old 07-19-2011, 07:45 AM
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My kids are younger, but I try to relax bedtime in the summer unless we have something. However, I will enforce a "rest in" the next morning, usually 8. They are never up past 930, they would be wrecked! Also on weekends, we have quiet time in their rooms from 1 to 330, and often during the week as well. I will usually have my 7 yr old read a chapter, do a few workbook pages, and then the rest of the time is his. They love having time apart to do with what they like (no tv or video games). If they seem tired, we'll have a nap during that time, especially on Sundays.

I remember playing outside in the late summer sun as a kid, and having to go to bed at 730 and seeing my friends on their bikes when I was about 8. It royally sucked!
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#35 of 47 Old 07-19-2011, 09:44 AM
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sadly we don't live in a cool neighborhood with lots of kids who actually go outside. my kids are the only ones who play outside. we keep their bedtime the same year round. 9:30 (or at least aim for that). if we lived in a lively neighborhood, i don't know. i might be tempted to let them play outside later, but i don't know. i mean they get up at the same time everyday whether they got to bed at 9:30 or not. so maybe once in a while i would, but everyday? probably not because they would end up being cranky.



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#36 of 47 Old 07-19-2011, 12:21 PM
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I have my daughter (9) and my son (6) for 3 weeks each summer, as they attend boarding school and the 900 mi distance plus my work schedule not allow them to come for any other breaks.

I live in a place where it's warm mar-oct and they definitely don't. On their breaks up there they are inside as unfortunately most of their fathers family is obese.

There are not kids in my neighborhood that come acallin but you bet when it cools off we are outside. I don't live in the most walking friendly area but you bet we walk any and everywhere we can. And yep, they end up staying up until 10 or 11. Sometimes they sleep in, sometimes they don't. Sometimes we will all have a siesta when the heat index is 105 and the air qualify is so bad we can't even get the mail.

And to me, that's the fun of summer. And they have rules regulations camp scouts and bedtime the set of the year.

That being said they both see me as strict because we eat healthy, have chores, and there are rules. Theres stucture and routine, it's just more relaxed then school and more rigid than their fathers family.

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#37 of 47 Old 07-19-2011, 04:30 PM
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If you can always have a handle on where kids are, I would let them play outside later during the summer....absolutely.  I say this for two basic reasons.  When I was that age, all the neighborhood kids (including myself) were outside from sunup to sundown.  My parents never let me stay out as late the others, so I was automatically labeled "different."  Obviously, this has to be within reason...what is age appropriate and time-of-history (2011 as opposed the the 1960s).  But I was brought up by extremely overprotective parents, and it did have negative social consequences all the way through elementary school and beyond.  Let them get's summer after all. 


The other reason I feel it's important is because so few kids even want to play outside these days.  They'd rather be on their computers, iPhones or videogames.  They miss out on those 12-hour play marathons, fresh air and exercise.  Childhood obesity is such a crucial issue...again....let them play.  From my own experience, I truly think whereabouts- monitored later summer play times are important for health and for fitting in with peers.  My own kids are 21 and 25, and they played basketball when they were younger until it got dark!  



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#38 of 47 Old 07-20-2011, 08:47 AM
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I do let them stay up a bit later.    But not too late....more so the girls b/c they need more sleep than 7 yo DS.   

We were on vaca last week in FL and there were many late nights, and early mornings b/c they were out of their elements.....   So I had some crabby kiddos.  

DS is currently in summer school, so I am more strict w/bed times right now.   Previously I'd let him stay up and watch a show on Animal Planet or hang out with Dad or play a game with him after the girls went to sleep.  It's's dark later and it's summer vaca so IMO moderation is key so it all depends on what is going on that day/night.   But I never let him stay up later than 10. 

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#39 of 47 Old 07-20-2011, 12:50 PM
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I think you should follow your gut about getting enough sleep.  We too have the kids out late in the cul-de-sac at night.  DD2's (1.5 yo) bedroom window faces the cul-de-sac and her and DD1 (4 yo) both love to look out the window while they're going through bedtime routine.  It's hard when you see other kids out playing, but I feel my responsibility to my children is more important so I am more concerned with keeping their routine fairly stable.  DDs are happier when their schedule isn't yanked around too much.  I probably wouldn't have a problem with one night a week as long as it wasn't a hectic day the next day.  When school starts back up it will be very important that they're getting to bed on time so they wake rested in the morning, else mornings fall apart trying to get everything done and kids out the door.

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#40 of 47 Old 07-20-2011, 02:30 PM - Thread Starter
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We have loosened up a bit, as in letting her stay out late a bit more often, but we decided not to let her stay out late all the time or even very frequently. She plays outside almost all day every day, even when it's really hot outside, from morning to night with breaks for meals, and sometimes the kids all get their lunches "to go" and eat together even. So it isn't an issue of her not getting enough outside play. And she does not adjust her waking time when she's up late. She still wakes up early. She's just an early bird. And she won't nap, so she is cranky the next day.
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#41 of 47 Old 07-22-2011, 04:07 PM
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i think that because you are seeking out other opinions, you already are leaning towards letting them play later than you originally thought was an acceptable time frame. i think your willingness to rethink your position (whether you change your mind or not) leans towards excellent parenting. i do not want to tell you what i think is right for your family, as i have no idea. in my family, we have all been seeing later bedtimes (which is working well for us). we live in maine (where summer is precious and short). staying up later has just been a natural progression (with all the extra hours of daylight). as summer starts to come to it's end, i will get my daughters back into their routines for school. i'm sure this won't be easy since it will still be light out at 8pm come mid-august. right now, i am just following what seems like a natural reaction to the season of sun (more time in it). that said, i don't believe in one size fits all plans for children/families. there are so many factors to consider like personalities and work schedules of parents. as i tell my kids about new foods, 'try it you might like it'. maybe you could let them have a night or two with later bedtimes and see how it works in your family. one last note, my kids kept getting up at 6:30 -7am when they first started going to bed later. after a week, they were sleeping until 8am. Now they are waking up between 8:30 and 9. i think it takes them a bit to shed the internal clocks they have from their regular spring/fall/winter routines. i hope this was helpful.




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#42 of 47 Old 07-23-2011, 06:36 PM
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My daughter just turned 6 and I her summer "bedtime" is very different than winter. She needs a good 11 hrs of sleep, but will slowly adjust her sleeping in time to get that. There is def an adjustment period though. We don't have any kids running around our neighborhood. I'd give just about anything to have that. You are lucky! ;)


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#43 of 47 Old 07-27-2011, 11:55 AM
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We keep to the same bedtime .My two ds 7and9 get up early no matter what tme bed is.The oldest does not function well with lack of sleep.
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#44 of 47 Old 07-27-2011, 05:34 PM
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Originally Posted by Tigerchild View Post

I let my kids stay up later in the summer (since it's sunny--well, WHEN it is sunny--until 9 PM or later!); but primarily when they're interested in getting more outdoor time.  :)  I don't let them just stay up playing video games, ect, in the house.  There's really such a short opportunity for them to play long periods of time outdoors with the weather being dry and mild that they really eat it up when they can get it (and I am happy that they do).  We don't have other kids in the neighborhood, but as long as it was daylight it wouldn't bug me.


I kept a tight lid on bedtime even during the summer until I realized how much fun DD (9, and my oldest) in particular had with the extra freedom to run and play.  Here in the PacNW there's pleny of cold, rainy, dark, almost wintery days this summer so far so the kids have breaks from being tempted to be running around every night until the sun sets; maybe your kiddo just needs some 'break days' as well as 'late days'.  But really, the time that your DD is going to be interested in running and playing in the neighborhood on summer days is speeding away so quickly.  To me, that's one of the essences of playing hard during the summertime, and that softened my stance a bit.  We had to tighten up on behavior guidelines at home (if she wanted to have later nights she would have to work through strategies of what to do when she was grumpy or needed more rest, she wasn't going to be allowed to take it out on me and her brothers and still get to do that).  It did take a week or two for her to adjust, but she did.  I'm finding that she thrives with limited, structured 'bending the rules' during the summer over stuff like this.  YMMV.  :)

Same here.  We're in Bellevue, and I totally want my kids to eat up the daylight and non-rainy weather when they can!  I'm a SAHM, and as long as we don't have any early morning obligations, I don't really care how late they stay up.  DH and I are night owls as well, so it's no biggie for us.  

We get such a short summer here... we've all got to live it up!


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#45 of 47 Old 07-28-2011, 06:59 AM
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My kids usually go inside at 9pm when we lock up the chickens.Bedtime is at 11pm.During school it is 9:30pm.We had a fire last night so we were outside till 10:30pm. We are not in a neighborhood,so no issue with kids coming over. I would not want anyone coming after 8:30,and anyone over would have to leave at 9pm.

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#46 of 47 Old 07-30-2011, 06:27 AM
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I am a stickler for early bedtime even in the summer, simply because my son (5) needs his sleep and does not sleep in the next morning if he stays up late.  A few special times we have let him stay up late--for fireworks, a day at the lake in super hot weather, or when relatives are visiting--but it takes him a few days to recover from it.  There is some evidence that we all get better and more nourishing sleep in the hours before midnight than in the hours after.  I myself follow the "early to bed, early to rise" dictum and wake up naturally (no alarm) by 5 am, and have been like that for most of my life, and my son seems to be the same way.  However, we live in northern Vermont, and summer here is so short and so very sweet that I often find myself longing for more time outside just when it's time to begin the bedtime routine.  I guess that will come when he gets older.  It helps that we continue to spend a lot of time outside all winter and tend not to hibernate.  We have lots of afternoons and evenings in the dead of winter when our son and other kids are using headlamps in the yard so they can continue to play--especially when we have lots of snow for making caves and hills--and it's a struggle to get them in for supper and bedtime.  We have friends who follow a later bedtime schedule in the summers and it seems to work for them, but it wouldn't for us.

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#47 of 47 Old 08-03-2011, 03:17 PM
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we allow my kids to be out until about 7pm but not later.

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