Midday Naps for Preschoolers Enhance Memory

An article from the Los Angeles Times reported that preschoolers, ages 3 – 5, who took a midday nap of an average of a little longer than an hour performed better on memory tasks that day and the next day than did kids who didn’t nap. Scientists reporting recently in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, also, found that the non-nappers couldn’t make up the deficit with nighttime sleep.

“We offer scientific evidence that the midday naps for preschoolers support the academic goals of early education,” said researcher Rebecca Spencer of the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. Researchers concluded, “Although curriculum demands for preschool classrooms are increasing, the benefit of sleep on learning warrants preservation of the nap opportunity.”

This ties into the connections between the multiple readings scripted in Practickle. An evening story time is popular as part of the bedtime routine in many homes. However, this research leads to the idea that storytime could, also, be enjoyed in the afternoon. After a nap, share one of the readings with your child. The benefit of the nap on the memory will not only be on that particular day, but will extend into the next day. As you look for activities that will be perfect for the late afternoon time, think of Practickle!

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