**** I do not receive any commissions of any kind for this review, it is simply a book that we have found useful. ****
When a book comes with the above warning, it gives you an inkling as to the powers of the book.
Sleep deprived parents will try almost anything to try and get their children to sleep and we are no different. I attended an Autism Parents Workshop several weeks ago for the soul purpose of gaining some tips on how to get L to fall asleep. One of L's therapists, thank you Katie, who also attended the workshop mentioned a book called "The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep."
At that point in time I was willing to try anything. L needs Melatonin to help him fall asleep and stay asleep. O on the other hand just needs assistance to fall asleep as once she is asleep she generally stays that way. She sleep talks and sleep walks but at least she is asleep!
When I arrived home that afternoon I jumped online to my favourite book store and ordered a copy of the book and the audio book and then eagerly awaited their arrival.
After reading the review of the book online, I thought I would try the powers of the story by playing it through the iPad at work for my charges at rest time. Oh my gosh, I have never had so many of my Kindy children fall asleep by themselves so quickly. I initially thought that it was just a fluke but after the third day of playing the story and having the same result each day, I very quickly realised the magical powers of the story.
The Rabbit Who wants to Fall asleep is written by Carl-Johan Forssen Ehrlin, a behavioural scientist with a bachelor's degree in psychology. The story is written with very unique and distinct language patterns that really do help children relax and fall asleep.
The story centres around Roger the Rabbit who simply can not fall asleep. Mummy Rabbit takes Roger on a journey to see Uncle Yawn who knows exactly what to do to get Roger to fall asleep and along the way they meet various other creatures.
The introduction to the book gives instructions on how the story needs to be read - throughout the book phrases are written in italics, which the reader needs to draw out like they are yawning, and there are phrases that are written in bold, which need to be emphasised. To read the book properly in the way that it has been designed to be read, it should take about half an hour. The instructions also say that if your child falls asleep before the end of the story, you should keep reading it until the very end.
When I had the book in my hot little hands, I had a read through it and realised that I may have some difficulty reading it aloud and staying awake myself. That evening I put the CD on for O in her room and asked her to lay on her bed and listen to the story. O's response was "but I'll be too excited and I won't go to sleep." Well, I went into her room 10 minutes later and wouldn't you know it, O was sound asleep. And, even better, the audio book has worked every night since.
So we now have a new nightly routine for O and it works every single time, even when O is adamant that she isn't the slightest bit sleepy.
I've also been using the audio story at work every day that I am there with huge success. 19 out of 21 children asleep one day, 14 out of 16 children asleep another. Surely that can't be a fluke anymore.
At work I am able to see the story working its magic on a room full of energetic 3 to 5 year olds. "I'm not tired!" "I want a cushion, not a bed." "I don't want you to sit near me." "I want a book, I'm not tired." Cue turning the CD on and suddenly I have a room full of entranced children lying very still with their listening ears on, listening intently to the soothing voice reading a story about a rabbit. And very slowly, one by one, their eyelids close and zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz
The fantastic thing about the story, from my point of view, is that the children who don't sleep during the day will happily lie on a cushion listening to the story. Each day, once their friends are asleep, I ask them if they want to get a book to read and generally they answer with "no, I just want to listen to this one." So it isn't only helping my charges to fall asleep, it is also helping other children to have a restful rest period.
This book truly is wonderful. Each night we ask O if she wants melatonin and every night, with out fail she replies with "no thank you, just my story please." Success!
One of the reviews from the Metro goes like this - "Tired parents of planet earth - this is what you've been waiting for ... If you don't already have a copy, you need to order one quick sharp." I second that review!
Carl-Johan Forssen Ehrlin has also written a second book titled "The Little Elephant Who Wants to Fall Asleep." And yes I have ordered this!
I'll let you know how much success I have with the second book when it arrives!