This Musical Parenting Hack May Be the Key to Putting Your Toddler to Bed Without a Fuss

Your kid learns to play an instrument and you get less stress. A win-win.

Despite your best efforts, getting your kids to actually go to sleep can turn into a losing battle. There is always one more book to read, glass of water to drink or any other excuse imaginable to keep the lights on just a little bit longer. Which is why we love this new parenting hack from a dad on Reddit who discovered that playing an instrument is a perfect wind-down activity for his son.

The anonymous parent explained that he decided to teach his 20-month-old son how to play a harmonica and started letting him get a little practice in before hitting the sack.

“After I taught him how to breathe through the harmonica, he happily now goes to bed playing for ten [minutes] or so each night,” he wrote. “He actually sounds as good as a hobo on a train already.”

The poster went on to explain that since starting this routine they have experienced a “cut down on crying” at night. It also seems his son will play the harmonica softly to himself when he wakes up at night—as opposed to waking up his parents.

It turns out this dad isn’t alone. Some parents commented they too have discovered the magic of harmonicas for their toddlers.

People also chimed in with other instruments their kids love to play and experiment with.

It looks like plenty of parents incorporate music as part of their bedtime routines. And since the sound of an instrument always beats the sound of crying or complaining, we’d say this is worth a shot if you are looking to streamline your nights.

Written by Joseph Barberio for Working Mother and legally licensed through the Matcha publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to

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