A while back I talked about reorganizing the kids’ toys. What we did at the time was the split the toys into thirds, leaving one third out and two thirds stored at any given time. We tried to split them so that each third had a similar selection of toys, for instance: a set of wood blocks in one, soft blocks in one, and Mega Bloks in one. The idea was that every couple weeks we’d rotate the toys and the kid would have “new” toys to play with.
It worked well for a while. And then we got lazy. So instead of rotating every two or three weeks, we were leaving the same toys out for more like two months. Pretty soon both kids knew that there were other toys put away and they wanted THOSE toys out, but Brian and I didn’t want to deal with putting all the other stuff away (mostly we didn’t want to deal with FINDING all the other stuff.) Anyway, it wasn’t working anymore. Also, it had gotten to the point that all they did was dump ALL the toys and leave them. So we changed it again!
Here’s how we’re doing it now: All the toys are available to the kids, but they are split up into tupperware bins. They’re split specifically enough that getting out a bin basically means getting out one “set” of things. For instance, there’s a bin of blocks, one of dinosaurs, one of ponies (my little pony and others) and so on. They’re each allowed one bin at a time, and they have to pick it all up before they get out something different.
You guys, it’s SO GREAT. They clean up! They play with everything! They don’t complain that they want different toys! They even work together to play! If one of them wants to play with one of the road sets (we have a couple) then the other one gets out the bin of cars. It’s seriously awesome. Of course, it only works because we have a giant walk-in closet in the playroom for all these bins to go it, but hey! It works! (Also, seeing ALL the toys out at once reassured me that we don’t have as many toys as I thought we did.)
Anyway, I’m sure you’re thrilled to know how we store our toys. How do you do it at your house?