Kids have a lot of toys. Big toys. Small toys. Toys with all kinds of little parts and accessories. And it all keeps changing every few months. I’m only 7 years into dealing with my own kids’ toys on a daily basis- but I have 2 favorite things that have really helped keep toys organized.
1. A Storage Bin Rack
These are designed for kids toys and come in different varieties and colors- but the concept is the same. Moveable bins that are tilted forward a bit for easy viewing and access. The bins are usually in 2 sizes that you can easily remove from the rack when needed. This picture shows my younger daughter’s toys when she was 3. It included categories like purses, wallets, puppets, blocks, puzzles, trains, cars, music, kitchen, blocks, and balls. Now at 4 years old, the puzzles and blocks are gone and replaced with My Little Ponies and a plastic food set. When other kids come over, they all gravitate towards the rack. There are labels on each bin which make clean up so easy. I love it- especially since my daughter can put away her toys all by herself.
2. Cubby Style Shelving
I got these from IKEA and I have one in both kid’s rooms. They are perfect for creating areas for different toys and books. Use various bins and containers for the smaller toys. My younger daughter has bigger toys like an airport set which has big chunky pieces- that all fit in one cubby. A large amount of blocks all fit in a pull out fabric bin. My older daughter’s shelves have a lot more books as well as space for all her Barbies, Barbie clothes, and a place to park the Mini Cooper =) The great thing about these shelves is that they keep growing with my kids. In a few years, we’ll turn the shelves upright when toys no longer live on their shelves and I have teenagers that can reach higher- yikes!
When thinking about organizing and storing toys for your kids remember these things:
- Keep like toys together and keep storage systems simple.
- Easy access means kids can not only see and find their toys- but they can also learn to put them back “home”. The more lids and things hidden from view- the harder to find and put away.
- Label with pictures when they are young, and with words as they are learning to read.
- Use storage bins and furniture that are flexible and can grow with your child to get maximum use.
- As new toys come in, make sure some lesser used toys are heading out to help maintain the space. Let your children be a part of deciding what to let go of. It will help teach them the life long skills of prioritizing what is important and giving things to other people who can use them.