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Daycare Center and Family Home Forum>Cots, Nap Mats, Blankets...What Do You Use For Naps?
SD DaycareMOM 07:30 PM 01-31-2012
Since I opened my daycare 5 1/2 years ago, I have always used the vinyl kindergarten nap mats, but I am getting so tired of them ripping so easily. I tape them for a while, but then have to end up shelling out around $80-$100to replace all of them every year. But, I like how easy they are to sanitize. So, what do you all use, and what do you like/not like about it?
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Crazy8 07:44 PM 01-31-2012
I use the 2" vinyl mats as well. I thought of going to cots but I like that I can fold the mats up and they fit perfectly on the shelves under the changing table.
I must have good ones because I've been using them for 10 years and have only just started to notice them ripping at the corners a bit. I don't know the brand - got them from my CCR&R agency when I was starting up.
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SD DaycareMOM 12:12 PM 02-01-2012
That might be most of my problem. I store them in the toy room (which is also our nap room) in a little corner of the room that is blocked off by a book shelf and the side of a big chair. The kids always jump down in there on top of the mats and I'm sure that's how they get so beat up. I just keep thinking, there's got to be a sturdier option that won't take up a ton of space!
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newtodaycare22 12:24 PM 02-01-2012
I had the same problem with the mats so after a year, I invested in these:

http://www.schoolsin.com/ELR-021-5.html

They have sales...I think I landed up paying around 100 for 6 cots. They are holding up great and I just keep them stacked in a corner.
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lil angels 12:42 PM 02-01-2012
I have mats that are intended for outdoor camping I think they are stearns brand and I have had mine for 12 yrs and they are still great. I don't let the kids play on themat all though we only sleep on them. I thinkyoumay Beale together them yet at at ills fleet farm or gander mountain.
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Texasjeepgirl 12:55 PM 02-01-2012
Originally Posted by newtodaycare22:
I had the same problem with the mats so after a year, I invested in these:

http://www.schoolsin.com/ELR-021-5.html

They have sales...I think I landed up paying around 100 for 6 cots. They are holding up great and I just keep them stacked in a corner.


I have these same cots...but.. I got really lucky..
I had been shopping online.. trying to convince myself to spend the money and buy them.. I don't know what made me think to shop on Craigslist...but I hit the jackpot... a preschool had decided to change to a different...more space saving style.. and sold these for $10 each.. I bought 14 of them.. and while hubby was making the trip in his van.. I contacted a few area providers...and they ended up buying several also.. I've had them 2 years now.. and am so glad I made the investment... I was struggling with the idea of paying internet prices...but when I found these at $10 each.. I was THRILLED..

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MN Day Mom 01:05 PM 02-01-2012
I purchased some heavier duty 4 fold nap mats... I think they are 3" think. I can't recall the price but they were about $20 each. I also purchased sheets for them and bought fleece blankets from Target recently, they were $8.00 each and had one of my friends sew them into sleep sacs that we put on top the mats. Keeps everyone in their space and cozy
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karen 12:18 PM 02-02-2012
I use cots....I knew when I started up my dc that that was what I wanted to use. They get sprayed with bleach water every Friday. I think it's worth the investment. I just recently found out that if you google a product that you are trying to buy....google will sort it by price from lowest to highest and tell what store it's at.
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wdmmom 12:21 PM 02-02-2012
Toddlers age 2 and older are on cots made by Lakeshore. They are great! I found them on Craigslist and bought 4 of them. All different colors so each kid has a designated cot. The littler ones go in pack and plays.
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SD DaycareMOM 01:48 PM 02-16-2012
Thanks to everyone who offered input! I think I want to go with cots. I will keep my eye on CL for a while, but may just end up biting the bullet and paying *gasp* full price! Thanks!
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DCMom 01:59 PM 02-16-2012
I used stacking cots for awhile, but they just took up so darn much floor space! The kids climbed on them and stuck stuff in between them, they just drove me nuts. My own quirks, I guess.

I replaced them with the hanging mats, sheets and hanger from DSS. I tell you, I love those things. My DH mounted hangers in a couple different place in my dc area, so I can move them when I re-arrange things. They are off the floor, the kids aren't playing with them and the are easy to disinfect and change sheets.

They were a little more expensive than the cots (about $40/ea now, I think) but I've had them for more than 10 years and they are still in good shape.
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CheekyChick 02:08 PM 02-16-2012
I use cots with a blanket on the bottom, blanket over the child, and each child gets their own little pillow with cover. I used to use the sheet covers for the cots, but the children tried to crawl under them and the elastic kept breaking. I LOVE my cots.
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WImom 02:24 PM 02-16-2012
I just switched to cots but was using the 2in nap mats. I only switched because it's easier for me to store the cots with the blankets/pillows on them then storing nap mats and keeping the pillows/blankets seperate.

I like both though and haven't had any problems with my mats ripping.
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Unregistered 08:58 AM 08-05-2014
I use Nap cots for 2+ ages and the youngers get full size cribs. The cribs available now are low profile and don't take up that much space. The cots are also low profile and lay flatter and stack flatter to the ground. I can stack 3 cots on top of each other and just slide them under the crib for storage. Works out great for me. The cots are an exact fit under the crib so there is nothing hanging out. Also the cots fit the standard crib sheet perfectly so you don't have to buy special cot sheets for the cots and everything is universal and easy to wash.
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Josiegirl 05:23 PM 08-05-2014
Right now I use mats and I'm down to 2, had to throw all the others out they were so bad. I have to buy more before school starts though because I'll have more nappers again. I'm debating whether to invest in cots. Someone on here said kids tend to stay on cots better than mats. I'm inclined to believe that because my kids wiggle and squirm off the mats and all over. But the mats are cheaper.
They use blankets and pillows right now.
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spinnymarie 06:27 PM 08-05-2014
We use cots, which seem to be great so far - although in IL we can't use mats.
I tried to get our link to them, but it appears they stopped selling them at Sams Club? I got them for $20/ea (or so) barely two months ago. I finally found some used ones on CL... and they wanted $20 each! So we went with new ones
They are stackable, we use the sheets that go on them and the kids all have a little pillow and blanket. We also store them out of reach in a separate room, which probably helps.
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SignMeUp 06:27 PM 08-05-2014
I bought 2" thick non-folding nap mats in blue and purple, about five years ago. They can be cleaned and bleached, and they have no cracks, splits or tears so far. Very thick vinyl, very durable.
I made sheets, like a pillowcase with velcro or snaps on the open end.
And coordinating polar fleece sleeping bags that go about 3/4 of the length of the mat.
When a child graduates from a crib, they get to choose their own mat, sheet and sleeping bag. I have everything from plaid to tie-dye to apple print to butterflies to teddy bears They are so cute.
So far, I have re-done my sleep equipment about every eight years, but I think these are going to last far longer than that.
And it's way easier to make the sheet and sleeping bag, than my last set - sleeping bags made of doubled polar fleece, with a built-in pillow.
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DaveA 06:37 PM 08-05-2014
I have the stackable cots- no mats in Illinois. Bought them used 4 years ago from a home daycare that was closing up. They've held up well.

I have 3 that nap right now, and the cots fit behind the couch once I pulled just a little bit away from the wall.
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