As most of you know, I spent some time in the Montessori world in Portland before starting my Professional Organizing business, and several years as a nanny before that. This experience gave me invaluable insight on how children move through spaces (as well as my first clients!)
Many of my clients are parents, and a few of my clients are their children! Keeping spaces tidy in a house with children is a constant struggle that most families face - so fear not, you are not alone.
Here are seven tips to create a playroom that is easy for your child to keep tidy:
Every toy needs to be accounted for with a home. If you have a million miscellaneous tiny toys from goody bags or happy meals, limit those to a small bin.
If a new toy enters the playroom and there isn't room for it to have its own home - that means something else needs to go. Give your child the choice of what old toy they want to donate to make room for the new one.
One toy/project/game at a time! Make sure your child cleans up their toy before taking out the next one. Cleaning up 5 different activities at once is too overwhelming for a child.
Create "zones" and keep the categories to a minimum. Kids tend to dump things in the nearest container when cleaning up, so this minimizes that.
Rotate toys in and out. This allows you to keep fewer toys and categories in the playroom while still keeping them interested in what they already own.
Smaller bins are better than bigger bins. They are easier for your child to manage.
Labels labels labels! If your child isn't reading yet, use pictures. When they begin to read, add words to the pictures. You can transition pictures out completely once they are confident readers.
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