Become An Organised Mum: Toy Rotation Getting Started

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This post was first published on Triple T Mum over on Blogger in March 2012. The photo quality is not good :) It is amazing to see how our play space has changed since then!

I have wanted to develop a toy rotation system for our toys for some time but just haven’t known where to start. When this happens I find it helpful to break the task down into smaller steps.

I have decided that the first step is probably to do a ‘toy stocktake’. So I spent today assessing what toys we have and listing them on a piece of paper. I soon realised that I would have to tackle the three main toy congregation areas: patio, lounge room and bedroom. I had a sheet a paper for each area.

Toy Rotation: Getting Started

I spent the next hour making piles of like toys and determining what area they belong to. I then listed the group name for the toy and found a container to store them in.

I discovered that the first step and the second step have to be done at the same time, otherwise you’ve got toy chaos! The next step is to look at storage solutions. If your doing a toy rotation the point is to have some toys out of play circulation, so these will need to be stored somewhere, somehow. The toys that are out to be played with will also need homes.

Toy Rotation: Getting Started

I tried to store everything in the Trofast storage shelves out in the patio but I had no way of limiting access to the toys that are out of rotation. I have used the storage containers and I have put the out of rotation toys in the shed. In the picture below you can see the toys that are in the first rotation.

Toy Rotation: Getting Started

I think it will be very useful to make labels for the containers and I will do that soon.

Already I have seen the benefits of reducing the amount of toys. The play has been more focused. Pack away time is quick and easy (labels will be an extra bonus!) Toys aren’t strewn about and getting trampled on or run over with wheels.

My biggest challenge is ensuring there is enough toys for three children that they are all playing happily. In the patio area it seems to be working well. The children have a choice at the moment of wheeled toys, Pretend houses, Little People Train set, sand pit and wooden vehicles.

Have you tried using a toy rotation system? What have you found that works with toy rotation? Where do you store the out of play toys?

More in this series:

The Clutter Scan

Kids’ Cleaning Tasks

  • Afternoon Tasks:

Organising Clothes

  • Evening Tasks:

Dinner Dishes

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Comments

  1. Hi – Love this post. I’m just getting my self phyched to do a post Christmas toy stocktake. I’m wondering do you include books in your rotation? I only have one child but A LOT of books.

    • Hi Lucy :) That’s a great question and I hadn’t actually thought about it but I believe I do, without realising it! Being a teacher I have hundreds of wonderful children’s literature. Sometime ago I sorted these into age appropriate piles and then stored the books away in boxes. I kept out all the board books and books that featured large bold simple text. Books with early childhood theme interests. Alphabet books, picture only books and read aloud books. This was still quite a few books! I have then separated these books and I guess rotate them! I have a basket of board books that will soon be rotated to contain alphabet and picture books. Our read aloud books are on my bookcase. I have another book basket that contains a selection of all the other books I listed above, many are selected with a theme in mind and the rest are stored in the children’s cupboard until the next theme or interest happens. Good luck with your toy stock take!

  2. Wow! Thanks for this post. I am not good at organization, so this was really helpful. I am hoping to help my boys focus in on their play!

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