A few months ago, our 3 year old started climbing out of his bed in the mornings, and running into our room for a snuggle (or less excitingly, to turn on all the lights and demand we start the day immediately). This was fine, except slowly, that visit started to happen earlier. And earlier. and Earlier. Until eventually, it would be almost 4:30 in the morning, and this little person was demanding to start our day. Naturally, I started looking into OK to Wake Clocks (aka Ready to Rise Clocks).
If you have kids (toddlers) of a certain age you’ve already heard of “OK to Wake Clocks” or “Ready to Rise” type clocks. Whether or not you have ever (or would) sleep train, at some point, if it hasn’t already happened, your toddler or pre-schooler, who used to stay in their own own bed, will start climbing out of that bed and waking you up.
And if your experience is anything like ours, this will happen way earlier in the morning than you’d like.
Enter: OK to Wake Clocks (aka Ready to Rise clocks).
Thus, for his learning to stay in bed longer in the mornings, and of course, at least partly for our own sanity, I decided I needed to teach our son to stay in his bed until at least a somewhat respectable hour.
Thus, I started researching all the best OK to Wake clocks I could find. I painstakingly read every review I could, and then eventually made a decision, landing on the “Mella” clock, aka the LittleHippo Mella Ready to Rise Children’s Trainer Clock. Here, I’m explaining why I love the LittleHippo Mella / Ready to Rise clock so much, and why I think it’s the best ok to wake clock I’ve seen.
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LittleHippo Ready to Rise Clock
So yes, we recently bought the “Mella” clock – the full name is LittleHippo Mella Ready to Rise Children’s Trainer clock that is amazing. Obviously, everyone has different things they’re looking for, but I have to say that I literally read reviews for all the highest rated ones OK to Wake type clocks I could find before settling on Mella.
Mella is amazing.
Why the LittleHippo Mella Ready to Rise Children’s Trainer Clock is the best OK to Wake clock for toddlers
Here’s why we all love Mella.
- She’s easy to use
- Has a cute face that “goes to sleep” during sleep time and “wakes up” when it’s wake time (in fact, this is my favorite thing — that she/it has a face that sleeps when it’s sleep time and it smiles when awake — our 3-year-old loves this.)
- Can easily function as a nightlight and you (ok your toddler) can choose the color
- Turns green when it’s time to wake up (which is easy to teach; “green means go!”)
- Can be used as an alarm when your toddler is older (and doesn’t wake up at the crack of dawn, but instead needs to be woken up)
I also love that it can easily be set for naps with a nap button (and you can choose the length of the nap). And for naps it goes straight to Green instead of Yellow first.
The best thing has been that it was fairly easy to teach our 3 year old the idea behind it. It’s been so easy just to tell him:
“You can get out of bed when Mella turns green!”An easy concept for a 3-year-old to understand
…This is a reasonable thing to expect him to understand developmentally, and for the most part, he has been great about following it.
This does, however, also tie into the one thing I don’t love about this clock…
What I don’t love about the LittleHippo Mella Ready to Rise clock
OK — so the one thing I don’t like about this clock is actually a selling point of the clock, and I’ll admit I only dislike it for NOW. I’ll probably actually like this feature sometime in the next year. It’s the only thing I don’t love about this clock (though there’s a simple solution):
The clock turns yellow half an hour before your designated wake up time (and bright green at the actual wake time you want).
The idea is, say you want your kid to be “allowed” to wake up at 6:30am, — Mella will turn YELLOW at 6:00, and your kid is meant to stay in bed for the next half hour.
He or she can play quietly or sing or whatever, but has to stay put until Mella turns GREEN.
My kid is 3, so this is NOT happening right now.
Maybe next year, but in the short term, ANY color change is enough to excite our kiddo out of bed.
BUT actually, for now, there’s a simple solution — just set the time for 30 minutes later than you actually want them to wake up (so, if we’re okay with him getting out of bed at 6:30am, we just set the clock for 7:00am instead. Then, Mella turns Yellow at 6:30 and he’s allowed to get out of bed. I fear it’s a little confusing but it’s not a big deal. I think in the next few months it’ll be easier to help him understand the whole “stay in bed when it’s Yellow” thing.)
(By the way, for naps it goes straight to Green instead of Yellow first, so it’s a little more straightforward. For now, that’s only an option for naptime.)
Also, this isn’t a deal-breaker because I think it’s well worth it, but the one other downside of this clock is that it is expensive.
If you’re in the market for a great sleep training clock, I think this one is worth the investment. (And look, I just saved you so much research!)