The Internet loves instructing us on how to get our kids to stay in bed till a decent hour. If, like us, your kids are immune to the Internet’s offerings, then you’re going to appreciate these mums’ 5am ideas — most of which you can do with your eyes closed.

1. Listen to the birds Open the window and listen to birdsong. It’s actually quite soothing. If they start getting too active, ask them to draw a bird.

Gemma, mum to Esmae (5) and Matilda (3)

2. Improvise a story Sometimes when I’m so tired that I can’t be bothered to read a story, I recite the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air rap, but very slowly. The kids love it and they think it’s their special fairy tale about a prince called Will. Win-win.

Kate, tired mum

3. Play hospitals We have a game where Mummy is in hospital (in bed or under a blanket on the sofa) and they bring me cups of water, pretend snacks, and take my temperature.

Rachel, mum to Amelie (4) and Charlie (3)

4. Wake up Teddy My aim is to get her to play quietly in her room, so I tell her to wake up Teddy, get him dressed (any outfit will do), give him a pretend breakfast, read him a story — basically anything so I can get an extra 5 mins!

Alison, mum to Sophie (4)

5. Watch TV If we’re starting at 5am, I put something I want to watch on TV and just let them play while I lie on the sofa. I know it’s not really entertaining them, as such, but at least it makes me feel better!

Cara, mum to Ryan and Annie (4)

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Article written by Sara Conway