Now Kids Can Hear Bedtime Stories From Levar Burton & More On The Calm App

You would think that after all their energetic antics throughout the day, my kids would have no trouble at all hitting the hay, but my kids get restless the moment they lay down like it's their paying job. It is no secret that some kids, like my own, sometimes have a hard time falling asleep at night. If your kid needs help relaxing for bedtime, listening to a Sleep Story on Calm is one way to help them drift off peacefully.

If you're not familiar with the Calm app already, allow me to introduce you to your new bedtime saving grace. When you first open the app, the sky blue intro screen instructs you to "take a deep breath" before playing soothing sounds of nature — a river running and birds gently chirping — as you browse their content. This reminder is exactly what I need to see when I begin my kids' bedtime routine. It's a total zen moment that helps me focus on the task at hand.

Once in the app, choose from a wide array of guided meditations, breathing exercises, soothing music and visual scenes, as well as Sleep Stories. A special section of the app includes content geared just for helping kids relax. In the Calm Kids section, you will find a variety of kid-friendly Sleep Stories. Listening to classic stories like The Little Mermaid, Cinderella, and The Velveteen Rabbit, or a new favorite like The Queen of Calm can help kids wind down at the end of a long day.

When your kid is begging for a bedtime story, reading from a physical book may seem like the most logical choice. But as any exhausted parent knows, this means doing the one thing you're probably tired of doing at the end of the day — talking. And when you start talking (er, reading) your kid is probably going to want to talk back. This creates an endless cycle of conversation and can leave you looking for a way out of that type of bedtime frustration. Letting your kid listen to a soothing bedtime story read by an adult who is not you is one helpful option.

The Calm app offers a host of bedtime stories read by celebrities that can help lull your child (or yourself) to sleep. I speak from experience when I say that listening to Matthew McConaughey read a bedtime story in his signature southern drawl is one of the most soothing experiences you can imagine. In addition to McConaughey's charming rendition of a story called Wonder, celebs like singer Leona Lewis and painter Bob Ross also voice Sleep Stories on the app. Most recently, Calm added the legendary LeVar Burton to their sleep story lineup. Your kids can now enjoy the story Journey to the Stars read by the Reading Rainbow icon himself at bedtime.

When it is finally time for kids to close their eyes at night, lullabies and soundscapes in the Calm app kids section can also help soothe kids into a restful night's sleep after they listen to their favorite Sleep Story. Falling asleep to the sounds of a campfire crackling, a babbling brook, or classic white noise can help kids relax and fall asleep easily.

Bedtime isn't the only time you can use the Calm app to help kids unwind. The app features a selection of guided meditations for kids that is sorted by age group, starting with kids as young as 3 years old. Try giving your kid some space to listen to these guided meditations after school when they may be wound up after a long day of learning. It could help clear their mind and set you up for a more peaceful afternoon and evening leading up to you new soothing bedtime Sleep Story routine.