Garfield the Cat knows about sleep! Kids don’t. Garfield is the official spokescat of the Star Sleeper Campaign launched in 2001 by the National Center on Sleep Disorders Research (along with the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, the Better Sleep Council, and the National Association of Elementary School Principals).
This 7-year campaign aims to get children ages 7 to 11 to really understand “that sleep is important to doing your best in whatever you do, including school performance, sports, other extracurricular activities, and establishing good friendships and family relationships.”
Most kids get less than the average of 9 hours of sleep that they need. This leads to irritability, decreased attention, easy frustration, and difficulty controlling impulses and emotions. School performance suffers. Behavior worsens. Many kids who don’t get enough sleep are misdiagnosed with ADHD. Sleep, nutrition, and exercise are part of the foundation of a healthy childhood.