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How to Help Your Child with Transition from Crib to Bed + Free Printable

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Are you considering the transition from crib to bed for your child? Here are some things that helped us when our 3 boys transitioned within a month of each other at 2 years old and 4 years old.


Transitioning from Crib to Bed

Making this transition can be scary for kids and parents alike! We were scared that our kids would suddenly wander around our home and get into things overnight, walk out the door, or fall down the stairs. At first we had a baby gate at the top of the stairs and closed it at night in case they did wake up and start walking around overnight.

Surprisingly enough, that hasn’t happened and all 3 have been in toddler beds for almost two years now! Here are some things that we did that helped with the transition by ensuring they were ready and that they’d stay in bed.


Let the Child Lead

We let our three boys lead when they wanted to be done with their cribs. They all have Delta brand convertible cribs. We didn’t transition our oldest from a crib to a toddler bed until he was about 4 years old because he never asked to be. He seemed to like the security of the crib.

Of course, within a month of him transitioning from a crib to a toddler bed, his twin brothers who were barely 2 at the time wanted to transition as well. So we went from no one able to roam the house at night to all 3 being able to roam freely. (Scary!!)

Surprisingly enough, they have all stayed in their rooms for the past year or so! I attribute this to the fact that we had already established the routine of an Ok to Wake clock that they aren’t supposed to come out of their rooms or cry for us until the clock lights up in the morning. I’ll share more about that later.

Delta Children Perry 6-in-1 Convertible Crib - Greenguard Gold Certified, Bianca White
Delta Children Perry 6-in-1 Convertible Crib - Greenguard Gold Certified, Bianca White
by Delta Children
  • GREENGUARD GOLD CERTIFIED: This crib meets the most stringent chemical emissions standards to create a healthier home for your baby. Tested for more than 10,000 chemicals and VOCs, this crib is certified to contribute to cleaner indoor air
  • 6-IN-1 CONVERTIBLE CRIB: Crib converts to a toddler bed, daybed, sofa, full size bed with headboard and footboard and a full size bed with headboard only (Daybed/Sofa Rail included; Toddler Guardrail #0094 and Full Size Rails #0050 sold separately)
  • SAFE OPTION FOR YOUR BABY: This crib is JPMA certified to meet or exceed all safety standards set by the CPSC & ASTM | We know chemicals have no place in your nursery, so we use a non-toxic multi-step painting process that is lead and phthalate safe
  • ADJUSTABLE HEIGHT: Adjustable height mattress support with 3 positions to grow with your baby | Crib uses a standard size crib mattress (sold separately) | To ensure the perfect fit pair your crib with a Delta Children, Serta, Simmons Kids or Beautyrest crib mattress
  • QUALITY MATERIAL: Made of sustainable woods like New Zealand Pine | Tested for lead and other toxic elements to meet or exceed government and ASTM safety standards | Assembled dimensions: 55"L x 30.5"D x 45"H | Easy assembly
 Price: $ 249.99 Buy now at Amazon
Delta Children Bentley S Series 4-in-1 Convertible Baby Crib, Black Cherry Espresso
Delta Children Bentley S Series 4-in-1 Convertible Baby Crib, Black Cherry Espresso
by Delta Children
  • Any Mattress used in this crib should be at least 27 ¼” by 51 5/8”, with a thickness not exceeding 6” | Mattress not included
  • Crib assembled dimensions – 34.25” D x 54.25” W x 42.25” H | Floor to Mattress Support base at the 3 positions (Lowest to Highest) – 9.5” / 13.25” / 17”
  • Strong and sturdy wood construction helps create a dream nursery where you will spend plenty of Mommy and me / Daddy and me time
  • Converts from a crib to a toddler bed, daybed and full size bed with headboard & footboard (Daybed Rail included; Toddler Guardrail #0080 and Full Size Bed Rails #0050 sold separately)
  • This crib is JPMA certified to meet or exceed all safety standards set by the CPSC & ASTM; Tested for lead and other toxic elements to meet or exceed government and ASTM safety standards
List Price: $ 289.99 You Save: $ 61.52 (-21%)  Price: $ 228.47 Buy now at Amazon

Toddler Bed Rail

Our Delta brand convertible cribs all have toddler bed rails that we could have purchased but honestly, we felt like they were overpriced and didn’t look like they’d help much in terms of kids rolling out of bed. Instead, we opted for these Dream On Me toddler bed rail that works great with convertible cribs.

From the research I did before buying these, a lot of rails like this actually aren’t made for convertible cribs and won’t work, so even if you don’t buy this kind, be sure to check to ensure they will fit a convertible crib if that’s what you have. This Dream On Me rail attaches to the bed on the opposite side of the open side so it’s very reinforced and won’t fall down, plus it’s held in place on the side without the crib rail.

Below you can see the bed rail and how it is on our twins’ beds.

Dream On Me Lightweight Mesh Security Adjustable Bed Rail with Breathable Mesh Fabric in White
Dream On Me Lightweight Mesh Security Adjustable Bed Rail with Breathable Mesh Fabric in White
by Dream On Me
  • SAFETY FIRST: For your child’s complete safety; this bed rail comes with a lightweight reinforced anchor system and a stabilizer bar; along with rounded; safe angle no-catch edges to prevent any injuries.
  • INNOVATIVE DESIGN: The lightweight, portable & travel-friendly Dream On Me Mesh Security Bed Rail features a high-quality, soft and comfortable, breathable mesh fabric
  • QUICK & EASY ASSEMBLY: Our secure bed railing is designed for simple, stress-free installation;No tools needed.
  • PRODUCT DIMENSIONS: The dimensions of each rail are 33” L x 14” W x 15” H; with a weight of 2 Lbs.
  • PRODUCT KEY SPECS: This product adjusts to fit adult twin-size beds with a mattress height of less than 5” inches only.
List Price: $ 39.99 You Save: $ 15.30 (-38%)  Price: $ 24.69 Buy now at Amazon
Dream on Me Bed Rail

Rail for Twin to Queen Sized Bed

If you’re transitioning your child to a regular bed like a twin or queen that isn’t a toddler bed, you may want to get a different type of crib rail for those purposes. The one below by Regalo is a well known brand and has over 14,000 positive reviews on Amazon! This rail fits a twin to queen sized bed.

Regalo Swing Down 54-Inch Extra Long Bed Rail Guard, with Reinforced Anchor Safety System
Regalo Swing Down 54-Inch Extra Long Bed Rail Guard, with Reinforced Anchor Safety System
by Regalo
  • SWING DOWN: The patented swing down feature allows this bedrail to pivot down and out of the way when getting in and out of bed or removing sheets
  • EXTRA LONG AND EXTRA SAFE: 54-inches long (hinge point) and 20-inch tall for added security
  • EASY TO SET UP: No tools required
  • SECURE: Anchoring strap that secures the bedrail to the bed. Designed with all steel frame
  • Fits up to a queen-sized mattress. ONLY for use with bed and box spring. AGE: For Children 2-5 Years Old
List Price: $ 38.99 You Save: $ 4.00 (-10%)  Price: $ 34.99 Buy now at Amazon

Ok to Wake Clock

We use an Ok to Wake Clock for all 3 of our boys to help them know when it’s ok to get out of their beds. We had already had this routine established before removing the crib rails but it could probably be done at the same time.

We had the issue of the kids getting up at 5 am which was just way too early due to them not having enough sleep and because we weren’t ready to start our day with them yet. Ha! During the week, my husband gets up at 5 am and showers, and then I get up after that to shower and get ready. We set their Ok to Wake clocks to 6 am so they know once that lights up then they should expect us to come in and that then they can get up.

One twin really loves to jump out of bed when the clock lights up and turn it off, then run back to bed. It’s pretty cute hearing his little feet run across the room. The other twin just started doing that recently too.

For our older child, we have it set to 7 am, plus an alarm since he needs to get up then to get ready for Kindergarten. Before that though we just had this clock and it worked really well for him.

The Ok to Wake clock also has a nap setting so you can set it to light up once nap time or quiet time is done to let your little one know they can get up. You can also have an alarm set for naps and morning, but we don’t use that alarm as it’s quite nosy.

Patch Products LLC 8091 OK to Wake! Children's Alarm Clock & Night-Light
Patch Products LLC 8091 OK to Wake! Children's Alarm Clock & Night-Light
by PlayMonster LLC (Home)
  • Adorable color-changing night-light teaches children to stay in bed longer so families get better sleep!
  • 4.5" bedside clock with soft yellow night-light glows green when it's OK for your child to get out of bed
  • Features an alarm clock with snooze, convenient nap timer, interchangeable faceplates, and fun animations that give it personality!
  • Easy for parents to program; grows with families by helping them get more sleep, and then teaching children independence
  • New, improved version has USB cord (with battery backup--4 AA, not included) to accommodate modern homes equipped with USB wall plugs, and easy international use; please note that wall adapter is not included…you may use any USB wall adapter you already own for phones, etc.
 Price: $ 26.39 Buy now at Amazon

Furniture Anchors

If you haven’t already, it’s very important to anchor furniture in your child’s room before ‘letting them loose’ overnight. A dresser may seem steady but if your child climbs on it, especially with a drawer open, it can easily fall on them and seriously injure them. Installing high-quality furniture anchors on dressers, changing tables, bedside tables, and any other furniture in the room.

4our Kiddies Furniture Anchors (6 Pack) 2023 Upgraded Furniture Straps for Baby Proofing, Secure 400 Pound Furniture to Wall Prevent Falling Anti Tip Earthquake Straps for Child Safety
4our Kiddies Furniture Anchors (6 Pack) 2023 Upgraded Furniture Straps for Baby Proofing, Secure 400 Pound Furniture to Wall Prevent Falling Anti Tip Earthquake Straps for Child Safety
by 4our Kiddies

BABY SAFETY - We know how curious children can be. When little ones climb on furniture there is a potential for a tip-over incident. The good news is baby proof furniture anchors can help to keep furniture secure in case your children pull out the dresser drawer to form a ladder and climb onto the dresser for fun. Even with up to 400 pounds of pressure, this anchor keeps furniture upright.

List Price: $ 9.99 You Save: $ 1.00 (-10%)  Price: $ 8.99 Buy now at Amazon

Bedding

In addition to transitioning from a crib to a toddler bed by taking the rail off, you can upgrade your child’s bedding! We went from them just having a fitted sheet and a blanket to a new set of sheets that has a fitted sheet, top sheet, and a new comforter to make it more like our bed!

Comforter

We’ve found these comforters to be super soft and cozy. This comforter comes in many different colors. One of our twins has blue and one has red. It’s so soft I wish we had one for our bed!

NTBAY Down Alternative Oversized Toddler Comforter, Super Soft and Warm Solid Color Baby Crib Quilted Blanket, 43x60 inches, Red
NTBAY Down Alternative Oversized Toddler Comforter, Super Soft and Warm Solid Color Baby Crib Quilted Blanket, 43x60 inches, Red
by NTBAY
  • PRODUCT FEATURES: Our toddler quilt is made of nice quality microfiber, and filled with thermal fiber. Our quilt is ultra soft, fluffy and not stuffy, and it will help your little lover stay warm in the winter and cool in the summer.
  • PRODUCT FUNCTION: Our beautiful quilt is perfect for baby gifts, and also can be used as crib blanket, travel blanket, nap blanket, pet blanket and stroller cover.
  • PACKAGE INCLUDE: 1 x Quilt (43 x 60 inches)
  • EASY CARE: Machine wash cold, gentle cycle, tumble dry at low temperature, cool iron if needed. Do not bleach.
  • SATISFACTORY SALES SERVICE: We are so confident in the quality of our product that we offer 90 days return and replacement service. We also provide it with a life time free customer service. If you find that our products have quality problems, just contact us and we will solve the problem for you immediately.
 Price: $ 27.99 Buy now at Amazon

Sheet Set

As I mentioned above, once our kids were in toddler beds we got them sheet sets with a top sheet, bottom sheet, and pillowcase. They felt so grown up! This set is a 3-piece set that is reasonably priced and comes in different colors.

Biloban 3-Piece Toddler Sheet Set Microfiber, Toddler Bedding Set Includes Crib Mattress Sheet, Flat Sheet and Envelope Pillowcase, Silky Soft, Breathable and Lightweight, Arrow
Biloban 3-Piece Toddler Sheet Set Microfiber, Toddler Bedding Set Includes Crib Mattress Sheet, Flat Sheet and Envelope Pillowcase, Silky Soft, Breathable and Lightweight, Arrow
by Biloban
  • Microfiber Polyester
  • Smooth and Comfortable: Biloban toddler sheet set made from 100 percent polyester microfiber, the toddler sheet set offers long-lasting strength, a natural resistance to shrinking and wrinkles, silky and exceptionally soft, providing superior performance and soft hand feel. Bring soft and cozy feel to your baby bed with our brushed microfiber crib mattress sheet set.
  • 3 Piece Toddler Sheet Set: 1 Fitted Sheet (52’’ X 28’’ X 8’’), 1 Flat Sheet(45’’ x 60’’) and 1 Pillowcase(20’’ x 30’’). Our toddler sheet set fits toddler bed or standard crib perfectly. Encased with elastic band around 4 edges, does not slip away when baby’s sleeping over it. Super Soft and cozy texture offers toddlers and babies a good sleep and daily rest.
  • Easy Care: To save your time and energy, the whole washing procedure is as simple as it can be. Machine washable on gentle cycle. Tumble dry on low heat or line dry. Avoid directly heat.
  • Biloban's Life-time Guarantee: Biloban's quality you can trust. If the toddler sheet set does not meet your needs for any reason, replacement or money back, no questions asked!
 Price: $ 16.99 Buy now at Amazon

Pillow

Our kids started to want to use a pillow during the transition as well so we got them a basic pillow that was rather flat as we didn’t want it to block their face. We did all of this when they were over 2 years old, we never would have used a pillow under the age of 1 as it’s not safe to have anything in the crib with them except a fitted sheet when they’re babies.

Beware that when looking at pillows, often a toddler size pillow is smaller than the pillowcase that likely came with your sheet set. We got a regular size pillow due to this and our kids seem to do well with it.


Toddler Bed

If your child doesn’t have a convertible crib that can turn into a toddler bed, here is a toddler bed that is ranked highly on Amazon.

Dream On Me Brookside Toddler Bed in Black, Greenguard Gold Certified, JPMA Certified, Low to Floor Design, Non-Toxic Finish, Safety Rails, Made of Pinewood
Dream On Me Brookside Toddler Bed in Black, Greenguard Gold Certified, JPMA Certified, Low to Floor Design, Non-Toxic Finish, Safety Rails, Made of Pinewood
by Dream On Me
  • MAKE TRANSITION TIME EASY: The Brookside Toddler Bed comes with a convenient low-to-floor design making it easy for your child to get in and out of bed. Two wooden side safety rails make the bed more secure as do the center legs, ensuring stability
  • MODERN DESIGN: The Brookside’s clean lines and contemporary frame design makes it an ideal fit for any design theme. Built of New Zealand pinewood, it is easy to assemble, and is a durable and sturdy piece of furniture
  • SAFETY GUARANTEED: Safety is our topmost priority and the Brookside is no exception. It is JPMA certified and is tested for lead and other toxic elements to meet or exceed government and ASTM safety standards
  • RADIANT FINISHES: Explore a variety of toddler room themes with the Brookside . It is available in 12 dazzling, non-toxic and water based paintcolors from Blush Pink to Pebble Grey to Royal Blue. Mix and match with other furniture as you design your toddler's special space
  • PRODUCT  SPECS: The Brookside’s dimensions are 53L x 29W x 28H inches. It weighs 19 lbs and the maximum weight limit is 50 lbs. Choose any Dream On Me non-toxic, Greenguard certified standard crib mattress for a perfect fit
List Price: $ 99.00 You Save: $ 33.19 (-34%)  Price: $ 65.81 Buy now at Amazon


How to Help your Child Transition from a Crib to a Bed + a FREE reward sheet text with a picture of my toddler's bed

Founder, Professional Blogger at The Way it Really Is, LLC | [email protected] | Website

As a mom of identical twins and a son two years older, I have gained invaluable experience in the realm, and chaos, of parenting. With a Master's Degree and Education Specialist Degree in School Psychology, I spent years as a school psychologist, helping children navigate through their educational and emotional challenges. Now as a stay at home mom and professional blogger, I combine my areas of expertise to help you in your parenting journey.

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2 Comments

  1. Jeannie February 13, 2022
  2. Marie Lewis February 13, 2022

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