Toronto West End Mamas Clinic

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Managing Toddler Bedtime Resistance



60 minutes (45 mins interactive teaching + 15 mins Q&A)

Oh, the joys of the toddler bedtime tango. Gone are the days when you could read a story, tuck your little in, give him a kiss and leave the room. Now he seems to have turned into the master strategist, trying to think of anything and everything to avoid going to sleep. I need some water. I want a snack. I have to pee. One more story. I need the light on. I need the light off. You may notice that your previously strict 7pm bedtime has drifted to 8pm, 9pm, even 10pm!

In this workshop, we will be outlining for you:

  • how sleep is physiologically regulated at this stage of development, and how to ensure your daily rhythms are meeting your child’s sleep needs,
  • how to provide your child with agency in their pre-sleep routine,
  • evidence-based positive reinforcement strategies to help your child go to sleep with confidence and ease
  • how to be clear and consistent in your messaging

We will help you develop a message that clearly signals the transition to sleep for your child and continues to promote positive associations with sleep time so it remains a secure and enjoyable part of the day.  

Why is a workshop like this important?

The toddler years feature rapid-fire development. Physiologically, cognitively, and emotionally, your child is changing before your eyes. Sleep is fundamental to supporting all of these changes. Yet bedtime battles can quickly consume some of those much-needed hours of restorative sleep. Prioritizing healthy sleep habits lets your little one make the most of all the opportunities for learning and growing in the waking world.

The habits formed now will carry throughout childhood. Toddlers love to explore the structures and boundaries of their worlds. Oftentimes this includes where and when sleep is to occur in your household. Providing a clear message takes patience, consistency, and commonly many many repetitions. At the same time, sleep can be a vulnerable state, especially when your child feels fearful or alone. Focusing on confidence and regularity in sleep now will lay the foundation for long-lasting healthy habits throughout your child’s development.

Our intention is that you leave this workshop with clear, actionable strategies to create a safe, secure, and positive sleep space for your child so that they can feel confident and independent each and every night.

Class / Workshop Facilitators

  • Dr. Denise Gassner (she/her)Infant and Child Sleep Expert

    Denise has been studying and teaching on various aspects of behaviour for nearly two decades. She turned her attention to sleep after having her own two little humans and becoming both fascinated and perplexed by how unnatural sleep can feel in those early years. Denise has virtual clinical hours with us at West End Mamas, and she teaches essential sleep workshops for our parents.

    Denise is driven to help make sleep less of a mystery for new parents and empower them to make informed decisions when it comes to healthy sleep practices that adhere to their unique parenting styles and family values. When not spilling about all things sleep, Denise can be found heading undergraduate classrooms at the University of British Columbia, dancing/running/exploring the outdoors, or hanging out with her husband, their two kids, and their pup in beautiful Squamish BC.

    Denise is fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Class / Workshop Facilitators

Class/Workshop Details


Upcoming Dates

Wed Mar 9
8:00pm - 9:00pm

Wed Jul 27
8:00pm - 9:00pm

Wed Jul 27
8:00pm - 9:00pm

Cancellation Policy

Please note that we do not offer refunds.

Click here to view our cancellation and late policies.