OK To Wake Alarm Clock

Today, I’m here to share about the greatest toddler invention—the OK To Wake clock. If you have a toddler who wakes up way too early or super inconsistently, this could be the answer you’re looking for. It was for us! We’ve been using ours for close to a year now, so I figured I might as well share a detailed review.

If you don’t know what this is, here’s a quick rundown. The clock lights up at whatever time you set. We set ours for either 7 or 7:15 a.m. Then you teach your child that if they wake up before the clock lights up that it is OK to play (either on the bed or in their room—that part is up to you), but they shouldn’t leave their room or yell for you until the clock lights up.

When I first heard about it from a friend I assumed it was too good to be true, but within just a few days Nova (at age 2) totally understood the concept. It became a fun game for her that she enjoys and looks forward to every day.

Once in a while, she will sleep past the light, but 95% of the time she wakes up before the light and plays in her bed with her pigs until it lights up. Then she runs into our room and proudly announces that she “waited for light.”

I mean, is this a miracle solution or what? We’re currently sleeping until 7ish every day, which I honestly think is great for toddler parents.

I feel like maybe we should send flowers to the inventor of this clock. Haha!

Here’s a link to our exact model, but there are plenty of different ones to choose from on Amazon. xx! Elsie

Credits//Author: Elsie Larson. Photography: Amber Ulmer. Photos edited with A Color Story Desktop.
  • We have the bunny clock (same idea) and it worked for our oldest, but our youngest (4) does what he likes. He’s pleased when he gets up after the bunny, but if they bunny isn’t up when he wakes up, oh well. The oldest (now 6) has graduated to a regular clock with post-it note arrows with 7 written on them.

    Best thing is making getting their own breakfast easy. On Friday nights we leave the tablet out so they can get themselves breakfast and watch cartoons Saturday morning. I now realize Saturday morning cartoons were as much for parents as kids.

  • Yes! One of the best parenting products out there! It surprisingly didn’t work very well with my daughter, who is a rule-follower, but we didn’t buy one until we had problems with her coming out of her room much too early. When my son came along we received great advice to start using the clock in his room when he was still in his crib, so he would learn that the clock turns green and then we come in to get him. My son is a rebel in most areas of his life but for some reason he obeys that green clock! 🙂

  • Yes! These are the best! We have a different one (Hatch) that bluetooth connects to our phones. Our 4-year old takes it very seriously and calls out from his bed “my light is greeeeen!”

  • My sister uses this same exact one for her daughter! My niece is four now, and has been using it for about a year and half. She knows she can play quietly in her room and can only come get mommy and daddy once it goes off. It has proven even more valuable since they had their second daughter six months ago. Now they are able to take care of the baby and get her settled in the morning without having to watch over an energetic toddler at the same time. After watching my nieces this weekend while my sister and her husband were away, I can personally attest to how awesome this device really is!

  • We did something similar for my daughter at bedtime. We had a decorative light that hung in the corner and we put it on a timer. The light came on at bath time and went off at bed time. That light was the ultimate authority. We’d tell her it was bath time and she’d be skeptical. She’d say, “Hang on. Let me go check the light.” And if the light was on, she’d come back and say, “Yep! It IS bath time!” Then we’d do bath and the whole bedtime routine, but she was allowed to stay awake and play quietly, listen to music or books on tape, until the light went out. That meant it was time for her to lay down and go to sleep. And she did. Not only that – she LOVED “lights on time” which is what she called that quiet solo time after we finished reading stories to her but before she had to go to sleep.

  • We no longer have toddlers but a 6 and 7 (almost 8) year olds. Funnily enough, the youngest would easily sleep in until 8 or 9 (if extremely tired) if it wasn’t for the oldest “trying to sneak” down the bunk bed and crawling on the floor to “not wake his brother up” in the loudest possible way (because he doesn’t really want to be the only one awake and still tries to respect our order to let his brother sleep). As a result, he’s usually up around 6 am on weekends (if not earlier) with his brother in tow who’s usually grumpy to be awake and doesn’t know how to whisper yet. They can watch tv quietly and fill up bowls with dry cereal before we get up but we can rarely get past 7 am before the youngest is fully awake and talking loudly like no one’s asleep and asking his brother a million questions about what’s going on in the show and when we’ll wake up and that he’s getting hungry! I think the only solution would be to put them in separate rooms……….but I wouldn’t be surprised if the oldest wouldn’t manage to find a way to wake the youngest one somehow!

  • LIFE. SAVER. This is the one thing I can’t live without during the toddler years. This and my girls still sleeping with a nightlight/white noise have led to them sleeping for 10-11 hours every night. It’s my favorite! It’s also great for naps/quiet time as they get older. I’ve also used it as a time-out clock on occasion. Just the best little tool.

  • We use this same clock for our 3 year old son, and it’s a life saver! He runs in our room and says “my light turned green!”

  • Mark Zuckerberg built a clock like this for his wife!

  • YES! We started using this a few months ago for our son who had just turned 4 — epic solution!

  • This sounds like the best thing ever! What a great invention!! Thanks for sharing, hope you are having a great day.


  • We have the exact same one for our daughter who just turned 4. I was really skeptical when I had read reviews and even spoken to people we know about it, but we tried it anyway. It is like witchcraft! From the first few days we used it, it’s been effective probably 75% of the time. (Like if she’s really excited or wakes up from a bad dream or something.) She even takes it when we travel.

  • May I suggest putting an analog clock in her room too so she can see the digital number and then see it represented on the analog clock. She will be telling time in no time 🙂 We put stickers next the numbers on the clock face to show the minutes. A 5 sticker next to the 1, a 10 sticker next to the 2 etc.

  • What a cool alarm clock! My toddler daughter sleeps till 8 am everyday but if and when that changes I’ll definitely want to get this. Thanks for sharing!

  • Nice! Our daughter is 24 now, but we had to put an alarm clock in her room when she was a toddler as she was getting up around 5. I don’t think she ever slept long enough for the alarm to wake her, but she did follow the “You can’t leave your room until the music is playing” rule.

  • What a smart clock, such a great concept. I love the clock’s design too, it’s really cute! 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

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