Best Alarm Clocks for Kids of 2022
The most common complaint among parents almost always revolves around sleep. Whether it’s a toddler getting up too early or a tween getting up too late, there’s no end to sleep-related issues to keep parents perpetually exhausted. If you’re a parent who’s at a loss for what to do because your 9-year-old wakes up before sunrise (hello, me) or your 7-year-old never wakes up in time for school (me too), you may wonder if an alarm clock designed just for kids might be the answer to your problems. Is it possible that there is a magic clock that would be effective at keeping an early riser in bed, while producing enough noise to wake a sleeping beauty?
I tested seven popular children’s alarm clocks to see if there really is an alarm clock that could work for early risers and sleepers alike. After weeks of early morning mornings, as well as a dreaded time change, we found that the Little Hippo Mella (available on Amazon) is exactly what we needed. With its cute design that both my kids loved, its built-in white noise machine, and its ability to function as both an alarm clock and an OK clock to wake up to, the LittleHippo Mella can help with a variety of sleep issues.
Here are the best kids’ alarm clocks we’ve tested ranked, in order:
- Little Hippo Mella
- Rest of hatch+
- PlayMonster Teach me the weather!
- Capello Cloud Clock
- Good night light
How we tested children’s alarm clocks
Hi, I’m Anna Lane. I was a freelance comedian and comedy writer for many years before joining the Reviewed team as the editor of Parenting. I live in Los Angeles with my husband and our two children: a 9 year old boy and a 7 year old girl. Yes, they are 18 months apart, and no, it was not planned like that. My reviews are informed by my life as a working mother who wishes for the possibility of being in two places at once. I enjoy helping other overwhelmed and exhausted parents find the answers to such burning parenting questions as: Which Nerf gun should I buy?, Which matching family pajamas are the sweetest? and why does my child keep telling me about the class bake sale the night before? I’m afraid I’ll never find the answer to that last question, but I suggest you stock up on my favorite organic cake mix.
When we decided to test children’s alarm clocks, I thought I would be the perfect person to take on this mission, since I have two children with completely opposite sleep problems. My son is an early riser who often gets up before 6am (and wakes us up afterwards), while my daughter struggles to get up in time for school. With the goal of keeping one child in bed until 7 a.m. and getting the other out of bed at 7 a.m., I tested seven popular alarm clocks for kids to see which was most effective at be both an OK alarm clock for waking up and as well as a traditional alarm clock.
I had my two kids test each clock for a week, and graded them on how effective they were at achieving their goals. I also rated each clock on how easy (or hard) it was to set and change the alarm, and whether or not my kids liked the way they looked and wanted to use them.
What you need to know about buying a children’s alarm clock
It should be multifunctional
If there’s one thing I’ve learned after nine years of parenting, it’s that products that are one-trick wonders aren’t enough. Babies and children have so many things so buying another gadget that serves only one purpose just means more stuff to dust off and keep track of. Choose an alarm clock that does more than just tell the time and you’ll get a lot more utility and longevity out of it.
Your kids need to like it
I say that many but I think it bears repeating: for a product to work for your children, you need their buy-in. If they don’t like the look of the alarm clock, they won’t want to use it and they certainly won’t follow its directions. Let them choose the clock they like the most, then set the ground rules.
It should be easy to use
I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know, but parents are exhausted and overwhelmed and they just don’t have time to deal with something that’s hard to use or difficult to set up. Choose a clock that can be set quickly and easily and doesn’t require 30 minutes to reprogram when the time change occurs. Ease of use is absolutely priceless.
Is it loud enough to wake your child?
If you have a child like mine who is somehow able to sleep through almost any alarm, you need an alarm clock that is really good at cutting off his sleep and waking him up. Only one of the alarm clocks we tested consistently woke my heavy sleeper, so you might have to try several to find the winner.
Other children’s alarm clocks we’ve tested
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Our team is here for one purpose: to help you buy the best things and love what you own. Our writers, editors, and lab technicians obsess over the products we cover to make sure you’re confident and satisfied. Have a different opinion on something we recommend? Email us and we’ll compare the notes.