Organizing Kids Toys
If you’ve been putting off the dreaded task of organizing kids toys, fall is the perfect time to jump in and do it. Children are back into their school routines, and Christmas is still on the horizon. Now’s the time to clear out overflowing closets before a new batch of toys arrives!
If your child is old enough, he or she can help decide what goes and what stays. This gives them a sense of ownership and responsibility. Tell your child that unwanted toys will be donated so that children who are not as fortunate can have a great Christmas, too. It feels great to get clean and organized, and even better to know that you’re doing good for others.
Pick A Date
Pick a weekend afternoon for the cleanup, put on your favorite music (Disco? Big ’80s? The latest boy band?) and make a party of it. Music makes any activity more enjoyable! Take a snack break halfway through to re-energize and then jump back in. It helps to plan a fun dinner, like a pizza night or taco party, after the room is done. This gives everyone something to look forward to.
Begin by emptying the closets, and going through items one by one. Create three piles: one to keep, one to donate and one to toss. Anything broken, with lots of missing pieces or that’s used up, like puzzle or coloring books, should be thrown out or recycled. Keep a large garbage bag for this purpose.
Place items to donate in large boxes or bags and clearly mark them so you don’t get them mixed in the trash! Items that your child has outgrown, like that My Little Pony set your 10-year-old no longer plays with, would delight younger children. Make sure donated items are clean and not broken. When you donate them, bring your child with you so he or she can see how good it feels to give.
When putting keepers back, it helps to group like with like. Keep all books on a shelf, stack games together, place puzzles on a special shelf, etc. Baskets and bins are great for corralling smaller items. Large baskets are great for keeping massive stuffed animal collections.
When you’re done, reward yourself with that pizza party and praise your child for a job well done!