Log into any mom’s group on facebook, chat with your stay at home mom friends, and a constant topic always seems to come up. What is your 1 year old’s schedule like? What do you do all day?
If you are anything like me, having a “schedule” for your one year old, or a general idea of how you are going to get through the hours, can make a huge difference getting through the day.
More importantly, toddlers can really thrive on having a successful routine in place. Here is a breakdown of what an easy to follow 1 year old sleep schedule, milk schedule, nap schedule, and activity schedule looks like.
1 Year Old Sleep Schedule
My 1 year old’s schedule at its foundation is all about sleep. Really, our entire day revolves around sleep. Nap time and bed time come first, and everything else is secondary. Lack of sleep, not listening to sleep cues, putting a baby to bed over tired can really ruin your whole day or night. Sometimes, spilling over into the next day. Working with a sleep consultant early on and establishing good sleep habits, allowed us to find the right sleep schedule for our one year old and we have stuck with it ever since.
Once your baby turns one, things can get dicey in the nap department. This is because babies go through the dreaded 12 month sleep regression. Typically toddlers don’t transition to just one nap till about 15 months, but every baby is different.
In fact, some 1 year olds transition to one nap close to their first birthdays, while others are much later around the 18 month mark. You can read all about the two nap sleep transition here for clues that your child may be ready. The schedule below outlines a 2 nap sleep routine.
Sleep can fluctuate and change, and there is also a need to be adaptive to things like unexpected illnesses, traveling, teething and just those few nights where you have no idea what is going on with your one year old.
The schedule below outlines a 2 nap sleep routine.
12 Month Old Nap Schedule
Naps are crucial to setting your 1 year old’s schedule. Most children at this age should have about a 4 hour wake window. The following nap suggestion is for a child who wakes at 7am.
Nap #1– 10-11
Nap #2– 2:30-3:30
1 Year Old Bedtime
Following the schedule I have set forth, the bedtime routine starts at 7, and ends once placed in bed at 7:20.
We start out with a warm bath, rub lotion on our 1 year olds legs and arms, put on a fresh diaper, and then finish with soft pajamas. Then some snuggle time while reading a book. Finally, we turn off the lights together, this was something fun he loved doing and I believe once the light goes off, a bulb goes off in his brain signaling that it’s time for sleep.
We place the baby in his crib. We tell him “night night” (sometimes we even hear him say night night back). Then, we close the door, and USUALLY we don’t hear or see him till the next morning.
1 Year Old Wake time
Our one year old’s wake time is pretty consistently between 6:30-7am. Our main goal is to keep him in his crib until at least 7:30am if possible. Many mornings he will wake up and laugh and talk to himself until we get him up for the day.
1 Year Old Feeding Schedule
We have three square meals: breakfast, lunch and dinner and I also implement two different snack times. This helps keep us on track and also gets us to the next meal before we start getting cranky.
Snack Idea For 1 Year Old
I always keep snacks on me whenever we are out. Some of my 1 year old’s favorite snacks are:
- Baby Puffs
- Pea Puffs
- Cheese Sticks
- Veggie Straws
- Almond Crackers
- Yogurt Bites
- Cereal Bars
How Much Milk For 12 Month Old?
This question is second in line, behind what’s your 1 year old’s schedule like. After you have stopped nursing or formula feeding, there is a period where you constantly worry if your baby is getting enough milk. Many pediatricians and the internet agree that 10-15oz should allow your baby to get all the nutrients they need from milk alone. An aim for close to 20-24oz is where you would want to be if your baby is thirsty!
Just like people, babies can fluctuate their needs too. One day they may want a lot of milk and the next day not so much. Do not stress about how much milk your baby is getting, especially if they are getting lots of good nutrients in their food and snacks.
Breakfast is served at the same time every morning. We start breakfast at 7:30am on the dot. For breakfast, focus on providing a fruit + protein or whole grain.
Breakfast Ideas For 1 Year Old
- Shaved Apples
- English Muffins
- Low Sugar Oatmeal
- Almond Toast
- Toddler Smoothie
- Turkey Bacon
- Yogurt Pouch
- Mini Frittatas
- Baby Pouch
- Whole Grain Waffle
Lunch Ideas For A One Year Old
Lunch happens at 12:30. I LOVE giving leftovers for lunch it makes everything much easier. If not I love having easy grab and go ideas in the freezer like muffins, chicken meatballs, sweet potato bites, etc. If you don’t feel like cooking, check out my review of Yumble, a really convenient toddler meal delivery service.
Lunch Ideas For A One Year Old:
- Ground Turkey
- Grilled Cheese
- Pasta and Meat Sauce
- Grilled Chicken and Veggies
- Nut Butter Toast
- Cashew Chicken Bites
- Egg Muffins
Dinner Ideas For A 1 Year Old
I feed our 1 year old exactly what we are eating, with some exceptions. Obviously he is not able to hold a sandwich or eat soup with a spoon, but I modify whatever we eat so he is eating the same. For instance, if it is a soup I will drain the broth and give him the meat and veggies. Keep the spice in the food! Whatever it is that you normally cook, cook the same for your child. You want them to explore all the different types of flavors, textures and spices.
Activities For 1 Year Olds
Babies at this age can not sit down and do “activities” but everyday I try and incorporate some fun ideas using everyday toys like toilet paper rolls, egg shakers, tupperware etc. My honest opinion is that the best toys aren’t in fact toys at all! This post-it-note pick up activity is easy setup and clean up and can be played and replayed through out the day. I also love this baby stacking game as well.
During free play, it’s a good idea to rotate your baby throughout different rooms in your home. Babies have really short attention spans, and sometimes crying and whining means “hey, I am bored.” That means it is time to rotate to a new room. Head outside in the warmer months, play in your own bedroom, play in their bedroom, and sometimes even playing in a walk-in closet will be a great change of scenery.
Toy rotation means just move on to the next activity. Read a book, practice stacking, play peak-a-boo, play with a milk jug, just find something different to keep their attention. And when all else fails, it’s time for snack!
1 Year Old Schedule
Broken down and all put together, here is in an ideal day of what our 1 year old’s schedule looks like with naps, feedings, and “scheduled” structured activities. Want the printable easy to follow schedule? Click HERE