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How to keep kids’ toy areas neat
and tidy — it’s possible!

First of all, please be realistic that your home might not always be ready for adult dinner parties when you have small children — and that’s getting realistic about the time of life you’re in. And it’s ok!!

Find an organizing system that will work with your children’s natural tendencies. When a space is set up with organizational systems in place, think preschool and the clean up song. Kids will definitely help put away their toys/craft items because they like to make adults happy — and it gives them instant gratification, per the complete article link below.

Too many toys does NOT mean a better play experience. The Montessori Method isn’t mentioned in this article so check it out about rotating toys in and out depending on if your child is playing with them.

Children get easily overwhelmed so they might only play with a toy or puzzle or craft item like Play-Doh for a few minutes if they’re surrounded by too many options.

Find new storage bins with the label cut out of the original box the toy comes in. That clutter removed will make the play experience easier especially by keeping small pieces together in a plastic clear bin or baggie.

Put up a kid’s height bookcase where there are designated spots for their fun possessions.

This article suggests small, lidless bins to make it easy to put items away. A huge bin filled with multiple toys that gets dumped on the floor is just a mess and becomes clutter very easily. But the more categorized the toy storage, the better. Group like with like so when trucks want to be played with, they aren’t mixed in with action figures, for example.

Set up a craft cart as art play has many different items needed than toy play and can be wheeled to a table with a tarp underneath so you don’t end up with paint on your nice floors!

You can make DIY bins covered with wrapping paper or colored duct tape to corral smaller items — think kid’s smaller shoe boxes, empty plastic baby wipes containers, jars, cans, Kleenex boxes.

And if you have any door space available, use an over-the-door clear shoe pocket organizer for toys/crafts (it’s definitely not just for shoe storage!) and/or hooks for painting aprons, etc.

Mount a toy hammock for stuffed animals or other items to keep them off the floor.

Use an under bed or under couch (if in the family living room) storage bin that might easily roll out to contain puzzles, games, electronic items used when Mom is making dinner and can keep watch while the kids are playing.

Paper items like activity books can be kept in mounted magazine holders or pull down shoe bins. And create a reading nook and use a vertical book shelf to maximize what you can fit in a smaller space like a bedroom or a section of your living room.

Use labels! Picture labels for the younger kids in your household and words will let everyone (including the babysitter or Grandparents) know where the toys belong and remember the preschool teacher who makes it a game and a song when it’s clean up time.

Reprinted with permission of

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