How to tidy up your toy room
If you’re a parent of young kids you have stuff! Whether you have a designated room in your house or just different play areas, my guess is you have toys taking up a lot of your space. This is a real struggle. No matter how hard you try, it feels like the toys take over again and again. Having a clutter free toy area will be a stress relief for you, but also greatly benefit your child. If you want to learn more about why it’s so important to simplify your child’s toys, read, “16 Reasons You Need to Purge the Toys and Why You Can’t Afford Not To”.
Learning to let go
You likely have some emotional connections to the toys your children have. You remember them playing with it when they were younger. They got the toy from someone special. You enjoyed playing with it together. It cost a lot of money and that’s hard to swallow. Or maybe you just wanted them to play with it more and are still hoping they will. In order to get to a more organized toy room, you have to learn to let go of items that are no longer needed or wanted (by your children).
Here’s a few suggestions for letting go of the item, but honoring the sentiment:
- Choose one toy each year that your child loved and place it in a memory box for that child to have when they get big. (Don’t over do it! Your child will not want a million old toys when they are grown ups and you can only save so many items for their future children. You are going to want to buy your grandkids new toys so don’t save everything for that purpose.)
- Take a photo of your child playing with the toys they love or the toys that they got from someone special.
- Give your toys to someone you know and love that could use them. Sometimes it’s easier to pass them on than to give them away with unwanted items.
Understanding your goals
Before you start getting rid of toys and tidying your toy area, make sure you have clearly defined your goals for the space. There is no right or wrong, it’s just what is best for your family. Your goals might be to have Montessori inspired toys and nothing else, or maybe you want a room with very little. You may have a larger space and want a bit more, but you want it to be organized in a way that is encourages play and is easy to clean up. Once you know your end goal it will be easier to declutter your toys and create the space you want.
As you go through your toys and start to reorganize your space, be intentional. Think back to what your goals are. If the toys don’t align with your vision, then it may be time to part with them. If you create an organizational system that only you can master, then you can’t expect your kids to keep it that way. Be intentional about what you keep and where you keep it so the system stays long after this process.
Setting up/creating your space
For me, this is the really fun part. I love getting rid of unnecessary items, but I really love putting everything in its place and creating a space that will really work for me and my kids. Think through your space before you put anything in it.
If you have a designated toy room, think about the overall feel of the space. Make sure items are easy to find and put away. Make sure there is space to move around and create.
If your toys are part of another living space, make sure they are organized in a way that they can easily be put away after play. Make sure everything has a home and that these containers are pleasing to the space they are in. You don’t have to have bright colored toy bins. You could instead use a storage ottoman or another piece of furniture that has dual purpose and complements the room.
Creating a system
If you have a system you will have greater chances of keeping your space tidy.
To do this you need to:
- Designate a place for everything.
- Make it easy for your kids to understand.
- Keep everything at kid level so they can help clean up.
- Be consistent with putting things back.
- Create a donate box to easily remove toys that can be given away as new things come in.
If something’s not working, change it, but ultimately try to find the right system for you and your family so it can be done without much effort.
The benefits to you and your kids
There are so many benefits to your family when you have a tidy space.
First off, it reduces stress for both you and your kids. The health benefits of having less stress are numerous and research shows the educational benefits are great as well.
Adults and children think more clearly when they have less to think about. Providing your children with a well organized toy area with only toys that are being actively played with is essential for their creative development.
Not having to spend countless hours picking up toys will greatly benefit you as well. For more about how clutter affects your kids, read, 16 Reasons You Need to Purge the Toys and Why You Can’t Afford Not To.
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As a parent of 3 small kids, I find the toys to be one of the hardest items to keep under control in our house. I try desperately to keep a handle on it, but it can feel like a constant battle. Walking myself through each of the steps above has made all the difference.
I hope this post is helpful to you and you can create a peaceful play space for your children. I am a huge proponent for play, but the benefits of play can be destroyed with too many toys and an unorganized space. Creating a clutter free toy room is essential for your sanity and your child’s development.