Babies and sleep can sometimes be a hard thing to figure out. There are many different methods of sleep training, and it is up to you as parents to figure out which one works best for you and your child. While we don't explicitly recommend any one way, here are some ways the AAP has studied and highlights.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) supports and recognizes behavioral techniques in helping infants learn to sleep. Two different sleep-training methods, the “Controlled Comforting” and the “Camping Out” methods were specially recognized in a recent study evaluating the longer effects of sleep training. I am a big fan of sleep training. We did this with our baby and it changed our lives! She picked up on it so quickly and learned how to self soothe and sleeps like a champ!
The “Controlled Comforting” method includes laying them down in bed, saying goodnight, and allowing them to fall asleep on their own. If they cry, leave them for a few minutes then go back in and reassure them. After you leave the room, wait a little longer to go back in. If your baby takes a binky then you can give that to them, reassure them, then leave the room. “Put simply, when you use controlled crying, you resist the urge to immediately pick up your child when she cries. This helps her to move on from depending on you to rock, sing, stroke or feed her to sleep – to being able to self-soothe.” (http://www.madeformums.com/baby/what-is-controlled-crying/28740.html)
The “camping out” method involves you, the parent, laying or sitting next to your baby’s crib/bed and gently patting or stroking your baby to sleep. Once they are asleep then you can leave the room. One reference states, “Camping out is a way of dealing with persistent settling and waking problems in babies and young children. It can also help with older children who are having problems getting to sleep, particularly if they feel anxious or frightened.” (http://raisingchildren.net.au/articles/camping_out.html)
While these are the two methods mentioned by the AAP, there are several methods and options that are available to parents that can fit your parenting style and level of comfort.