Sunday, February 24, 2013

Pretend Minimalism: Rotating Toys

Have you ever watched your child as she sits in the middle of a toy pile, bewildered, not knowing what to play with?  She may pick at a few things, but eventually gives up and goes to play with the door stop.  But... give your child a choice between a few things and he will happily play with them for a while.

Kids don't need, or even want, 432 toys to choose from during play time.  Plus, if they see all of their toys on a daily basis, they will get sick of them (whether they play with them or not).  This is why I rotate toys.

The concept is very simple.  Put a portion of the toys away, and only let your child play with a select few at a time.  My child has quite a few toys (we just had Christmas and a birthday).  I have his toys split into 4 different groups, and he still has PLENTY to choose from.

I use my trusty Mr. Cart for this purpose.  ~I've had my Mr. Cart since I was probably 7 and he has organized many things in my life.  And yes, it is actually called Mr. Cart.  I didn't make that up...even though I probably would name a cart if I liked it enough.~
Note: Although this is out in Baby's room here, it's home is actually in the closet.  So, he really doesn't see the toys until I rotate them in.
I keep a set of toys in each of the bins, and Baby plays with the fourth set.  Big toys go in the toy box, and stuffed animals are kept in a pop-up hamper.  The plan is to switch to a new set of toys every 2 weeks or so.  Then...Ta-Da!  New toys, Baby!

He also has books and sensory toys that I let him use supervised.  Yes...he has to be supervised with his books because he literally eats them (yes bites, chews, and swallows).  But these are not in the rotation as I simply choose what he will use when the time comes.

I am aware that this isn't actually minimizing, since I did not actually get rid of his toys.  But, I feel like it gives a sense of minimalism, anyway.  Plus, there is less to clean up, at the end of the day.

1 comment:

  1. I keep saying I'm going to do this, but I haven't yet. The kids flat out don't see their toys because they've become part of the backdrop of their room. I think if I rotated, each time I brought out new ones I'm sure they'd notice them and actually play with them. We keep saying we'll get rid of them all if they don't start playing with them :)