August 01, 2018

How to Organise Your Playroom and Keep Toys Tidy

Play is the most important thing your child can do. It is essential for their social, physical, cognitive and emotional development. But play needn’t be messy.

If you’re tired of tripping over toys, here are some simple tips to organise your playroom and keep your children’s toys tidy (well, as much as possible!) while still allowing them to have fun.

  1. Declutter
    The first thing to do is sort the toys you have and donate any toys you no longer need or your child has outgrown and throw out any toys that are broken or have missing pieces that affect their functionality.
  1. Select a play area
    By defining a set play area you can contain toys to that area, making clean up easier and reducing the chance of toys being carted all over the house. The play area may be in the child’s bedroom, the corner of a living area, or a separate dedicated play room if space permits. Now the fun part, working out how to store and display the toys to invite play.
  1. Sort toys by type
    Start by grouping the toys you’ve decided to keep into categories (eg. cars, dolls, blocks, etc) and think about setting up storage solutions or activity areas that best suit the items and how your child likes to play. For example, you may have a train table, reading corner, dolls house corner or imaginative play area.
  1. Rotate and store toys
    Consider how many toys you have and how this may fit the space you have available. If there are too many toys, you can put some away in storage for now and implement a rotation system, so the child feels like they have fresh toys and layouts to be inspired by on a regular basis. Alternatively, you may want to keep some toys that have lots of pieces like puzzles and blocks out of reach so you can choose to bring them out for play when there is time to pack them away after play has finished. You may choose to store bulky toys under the bed, near a bookcase or at the end of the bed so they are out of the way.
  1. Select storage solutions
    Low, open shelves make it easier for children to find and grab their favourite toys. They’re also an affordable solution to keep toys off the floor and make clean up easier. When using storage boxes, labels with pictures or large words may help the child find what they’re looking for. Make sure your storage solutions are safe, do you need to anchor any furniture to the wall to prevent them being pulled over, could anything heavy be pulled over by the child, or are there any sharp corners etc.?
  1. Keep it tidy together
    Giving your child the responsibility of keeping their play area tidy is a good life skill, so start them young and make it part of your daily routine. You could even add it to their routine chart if you have one. Work out the clean up rules that will suit your family and make your life easier. For example, limit the number of toys the child can have out at any one time to encourage them to pack up each activity before moving onto the next one. 
    Give your child a five minute warning before it’s pack up time. Then make packing up fun rather than a chore: sing a tidy up song or play your favourite music, make it a race, turn it into a game (eg. putting the dolls to bed in the dolls house or stacking the blocks into a structure on the shelf). The child may feel overwhelmed by the mess or not know where to start, if so tidy up together and give specific instructions like let’s start by putting the cars into this box, etc. If you run out of time to pack everything away, try using a laundry basket or blanket to quickly collect the toys to be put away later.

Hopefully these tips can help you design a play area that is safe, creates opportunities for play and is easier to keep tidy.

Do you have a favourite play room organisation or toy tidying tip you’d like to share? We would love to read your comments below.


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