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Daycare Center and Family Home Forum>I Can't Decide
Danielle 10:21 AM 02-05-2011
I can't decide what to do for nap mats/cots.

I have a 22 month old part time that naps in a pack-n-play but can move to a mat/cot. When I'd have an older child, they would sleep in one of my son's bed. My son had outgrown naps but now with more playmates, he again needs a nap. I now I have 2 full time 4 year olds. They too have outgrown naps. Since my kids and the 22 month old need naps, I've been enforcing quiet time. We pull pillows and blankets out in the livingroom and watch a movie (and I drink much needed coffee in the quietness). They don't have to sleep but they have to be quiet for the ones that do fall asleep. I have 4-5 depending on the day that will be here for quiet time. There's 2 problems with the way we did it this past week (which I knew was just temporary). With just blankets (one big one for them to lay on and then they each have their own to cover up with) and pillows, there's no boundaries so they were rolling all over the place. The other problem is I have hardwood floors, so it's not all that comfortable. I can't decide if I should get cots or mats. Mats are cheaper but might move around on the floor. Cots will be more stable but more expensive. I also need to think about storage. I have limited space. What should I get? I've thought of the typical trifold daycare mats, camping mats, sleeping bags and these ('m sure there's other ideas I haven't thought of.
Candyland 10:56 AM 02-05-2011
I have always liked that our school used cots with a tie-sheet. The kids are off the floor and you wash the sheets weekly. Kids also bring their own bedding. And the cots are stackable.
Danielle 06:18 AM 02-06-2011
Bumping up for more input.
Little People 06:24 AM 02-06-2011
Maybe you could just order 1 from wal mart. I have thought about these too. Then you could get 1 nap mat and then you could try them both and see which one you like better? I use the nap mats but I have carpet and I use a crib sheet on them and they work perfect for me. I got my nap mats at wal mart after all the school stuff went on clearance and got them for $3.00 each. I bought several extras Oh, also then if you don't like the cot from wal mart, they will take it back and your only out the .97 shipping.
AnythingsPossible 06:57 AM 02-06-2011
Don't know if you do ebay or not, but I have been strongly considering buying these. I currently just use fabric on the floor for their nap spot. Each child gets one sewn for them with a matching fleece blanket and pillow, but I am thinking I would rather have them up off the floor. For the most part I have good nappers, but I do have a few on occasion that like to roll around, the off the floor cots would prevent that. I have had the foldable cots from walmart and I wasn't a fan. I also have a little girl who brought a sleeping bag to use for nap time, but they take up a lot of room!
Danielle 07:15 AM 02-06-2011
I do like the stackable cots. I just don't know where I'd put them.

Why didn't you like the ones from Walmart?
rysakaem1 08:33 AM 02-06-2011
Originally Posted by AnythingsPossible:
Don't know if you do ebay or not, but I have been strongly considering buying these.
I use these and love them. I like that the kids are off the floor. I bought the sheets to go with them. They're slip on and off easily and the cots get wiped with bleach water. Parents always comment on how nice they are.
AnythingsPossible 11:09 AM 02-06-2011
Originally Posted by Danielle:
I do like the stackable cots. I just don't know where I'd put them.

Why didn't you like the ones from Walmart?
It seemed like I had to replace them frequently. The seams where they fold would start to tear. Storage was an issue as well.
MG&Lsmom 12:06 PM 02-06-2011
15 years ago when I was working in a center we had ones similar to the ebay ones. I despised cleaning those things! LOL!

I use yoga mats and kids sleeping bags. Cheap and easy to clean. Gives them their own space. Plus it means that I can move them around or to another room easily if someone needs to be separated for any reason.

I don't allow dck to sleep in my kids beds. It's their personal space.
Abigail 10:17 PM 02-06-2011
There are pro's and con's here. First, you get what you pay for.

Mats that are foldable and sold cheaper (less than $15) end up tearing at the seams and yes, they do move around on the floor and make squishy noises since it's plastic. Mats do not lift kids off the ground, but they are multi-purpose because you can turn them into "sections" like dividers or even use them as tumbling mats.

Cots are more expensive and very simple to clean and store. Most cots are stackable and you can spray them weekly with the bleach/water solution and wipe down or let air dry. They run about $25-$35 a piece, but last longer than a year. They also lift kids off the cold floor, but they are still easily moveable. We have all our dck's on cots and half of them move them a foot at a time to get "closer" to a friend to chat when they need to go to bed.

Either way, I am going to invest in cots. I think they look nicer and they have a great resell value too! I don't want the ones from Wal-mart because they're inviting for single use, like for family use. When you look at all the bars for cleaning and setup (even though setup looks simple) it is just too much liability for getting fingers pinched and trying to keep all of it clean. I would go with the basic cots like someone posted.
Danielle 04:11 AM 02-07-2011
An update:

I decided not to get the Walmart ones b/c of mixed reviews. I decided against the stacking cots b/c I have nowhere to store them and kids moving them will mess up the hardwood floor. The cheap mats are like you said, cheap. Sleeping bags are not thick enough.

What I did was buy foam mattress pads. I cut them down to twice the size of a nap mat, folded them in half and covered them with a crib sheet. Currently only one has a mattress protector on it. That will be my daughter's as she just became potty trained and may have accidents. I'm going to get protectors for the rest. The middle of the bottom is not covered. The foam that is in contact with the hard wood floor helps with sliding. They are pretty comfortable too! And they fit well in the hall closet. Total cost-$10 each.

Here's a kiddos can't let me take a picture without them

kendallina 09:34 AM 02-07-2011
That's a great idea! Kiddos seem to be happy...
jojosmommy 09:51 AM 02-07-2011
I was going to suggest this. I use it for my little sleepers (who arent in pack n plays. They love them! Cheap and easy- and I have even brought one over to my sisters when my son sleeps over. He loves it!
snbauser 03:04 PM 02-07-2011
I have these:
I have 10 of them stacked and standing on end in the corner of my classroom. They take up about 2ft X 3 1/2 ft.
Tags:cots, mats, nap
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