Sleep, rest and relaxation are vitally important to children’s physical, neurological, social and emotional development.

The preschool period represents a particularly important period for sleep development, with many children transitioning away from regular daytime sleep. Children’s needs for sleep, rest, and relaxation can vary significantly during this period presenting challenges in implementing practices that meet the National Quality Standard.

The University of Queensland’s Institute for Social Sciences, under the direction of Life Course Centre Chief Investigator Professor Karen Thorpe and Life Course Centre Research Fellows Dr Sally Staton and Associate Professor Simon Smith, has developed a series of professional development workshops to assist early education professionals to: understand best practice in sleep, rest and relaxation; respond to changing regulatory frameworks; and promote healthy sleep development in young children.

These SLEEP – Sleep learning for early education professionals – training programs are the result of a comprehensive early year sleep study of children (age birth-5) and collaborations with research partners: the Queensland Government Department of Education and Training, the National Health and Medical Research Council, the Creche and Kindergarten Association, Family Day Care Queensland, and the Queensland University of Technology.

The SLEEP professional development resources cover sleep health and sleep development and sleep, rest and relaxation needs and best practice for babies and toddlers (age birth-3) and children (age 3-5).


You can find more information on the SLEEP professional development resources as well as positive sleep, rest and relaxation practice examples, case studies, video podcasts and strategies for effective communications between parents and early education professionals by visiting:

To find out more about our sleep research or to discuss your development needs, contact:
+61 (0)7 3346 7470