The Sleep Fairy

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Mom’s Choice award winner, silver recipient

Helping children learn to stay in bed after they have been tucked in for the night is a challenge all parents face. The most common advice given to parents whose children have problems at bedtime is, “Put them to bed and let them cry themselves to sleep.” But most parents just aren’t comfortable doing this.

Behaven Kids founder Janie Peterson has a much better solution. She has helped parents deal with bedtime issues for years and developed a method that she has shared with the families she counsels.

Now, with the help of this delightful book, The Sleep Fairy, families everywhere can have pleasant bedtimes.

The Sleep Fairy method – which is effective with children ages 2 years and up – is easy. First, parents establish the family’s bedtime routine and explain the rules to their children in a clear and simple way. Next, comes a reading of The Sleep Fairy. (After a few nights, parents can choose to read just the poem about The Sleep Fairy and not the entire book.) Then, if all the bedtime rules have been followed, The Sleep Fairy visits during the night and leaves a special surprise. Not following the rules means no visit and no reward.

In the story, the characters, Molly and Katie, learn what is expected of them at bedtime and are motivated by the anticipation of finding a gift from The Sleep Fairy. Using Janie Peterson’s technique, teaching children to stay in bed is as simple as sprinkling fairy dust.

Eventually, children learn to feel good about staying in bed and falling asleep without whining, crying or begging. (This, ultimately, is the parents’ reward.) The Sleep Fairy is a resource that parents can easily adapt to meet the needs of their own families.  Parents may add details to the story so that it more closely matches their own children’s bedtime routine.

Try it! It works … and happy bedtime!


What others say about The Sleep Fairy:

“As a psychologist who specializes in treating children with sleep problems, I frequently ‘prescribe’ The Sleep Fairy to families I work with. This book is a captivating read for children, and parents don’t mind reading it over and over because it works. It’s destined to become a classic.”

Brett R. Kuhn, PhD , Director, Behavioral Pediatric Sleep Clinic, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Individual Member, American Academy of Sleep Medicine, Omaha


“In my 25 years of counseling kids and families, I’ve learned that getting children to go to bed and stay in bed is a common challenge many families face. The Sleep Fairy addresses this problem in a creative, fun way, giving families a tool for successful bedtimes.”

Jeanne M. Warnock, LCSW, Family Intervention Services, S. Orange, N.J.


“Few interventions work as well, as quickly and with so little effort on the part of parents. The Sleep Fairy is truly remarkable in its ability to help children get to sleep and sleep through the night without the begging, arguing or tantrums that many parents of young children face each night!”

Ray Burke, PhD, Research Psychologist, Omaha


“We have been using The Sleep Fairy method for the last two and a half weeks and we have enjoyed great success. … It is a wonderful idea and we will continue to use it. The motivation is positive and it eliminates a negative exchange being the last words of the night. What a nice way to end the day.”

Peggy and Peter Hebert, parents of 4 children, San Pedro, Calif.