My toddler doesn't like napping in the car. I have tried to play lullaby music for him so that he can nap as we drive for a long distance, say like 2hrs or less mostly. Most of the time he's just looking out the window the entire drive.

Are there any technics? Or its just fine for him to stare?

  • 1
    As long as he's just peacefully enjoying the ride, why force him? Sep 19 '16 at 18:12
  • Not forcing, just thought it could be fun. He also gets cranky when we arrive.
    – user22314
    Sep 20 '16 at 17:28

If he's looking out the window, he's likely processing what he sees and benefiting from it. I wouldn't worry about the fact he doesn't go to sleep unless he is showing other signs of lack of sleep.

If the car trip is at nap time and he is missing sleep and getting cranky later, you could consider getting a lower car seat or putting shades on the windows so he will get bored with nothing to look at, and see if that results in napping. But again, I'd only do that if the lack of a nap is causing problems, as I suspect he's looking and learning from what he sees.


In my experience, children either belong to the subset of children who happily nap/fall asleep in the car, or they belong to the subset that don't unless they're very very tired.

As far as techniques for encouraging it, either silence or very quiet non-verbal music can sometimes help, and definitely a window shade can help. If your child likes looking out the window, though, he/she will likely dislike a window shade, so be prepared for an argument there. Otherwise, just making sure your child is comfortable, particularly in regards temperature (not too cold, in particular) will usually be all you can do.

As far as being okay to stare, sure, why not? Lots of interesting things happen outside a car - other cars/trucks/etc. passing by, trees, colors, etc...

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