Toys have entertained children for generations. But when it comes to the aftermath—the sea of scattered toys all over the floor, after a long day of fun—cleaning up can be a huge chore. Even accidently stepping on a toy can set off a parent. And what if you’re transitioning from home to home? Moving day would feel chaotic, if you spend much of the packing period picking up dollies, Legos, the works.
So, to help make things easier for the parent who’s always picking up after their children, we put together a list of easy ways to make the cleanup less stressful.
Sort Toys By Genre
Your child may have a combination of toys that they play with. For example, he/she will play with stuffed animals one day, but they’ll draw and color the next day. Where do you start?
First, figure out what your child frequently plays with, and then separate the toys into groups, based on both genre and toy needs. Costumes and accessories can either go in a trunk or in a closet. Crayons, markers, pencils, paper, and other arts-and-crafts supplies can be at their play table, or inside a drawer. Sorting in this fashion will help you keep in mind where toys are, and where to put them when children are done playing.
Hammocks are ideal for storing stuffed animals away. If a stuffed animal is just lying there on the floor, why not give that furry friend a place to sleep? You can even have the kids imagine that their bear or their doll needs to take a nap, and has to lie in a hammock. You can do this with as many animals and dolls as you want, just as long as the hammock can support all that weight, which it should.
Create Extra Storage
Creating storage under a table is a great way to store toys without having to worry about boxes taking up room space. Cube tables can be used as end tables or work tables for kids, whenever they’re playing, drawing, or coloring. Or, if you like the fact but want to save money, placing regular boxes or baskets under the table can work too.
Have Your Kids Hep
Children learn things from their parents, whether it’s through words or actions. In this case, if your child sees you cleaning, then that might motivate them to clean up as well. It’s best to teach them these things now, so that they’ll know what to do in the future.
Another thing to consider is to encourage your kids to clean up, even when they don’t want to. Try having them spend five minutes cleaning up every once in a while, during the day. This makes them pick up less toys, and even saves you from seeing them throw a fit. Once they get used to picking up after themselves, it’ll eventually be a no-brainer for them; and you won’t have to worry about constantly reminding them to clean up.
Get Rid Of Things
The biggest challenge that you and your child will face is the idea of getting rid of toys you don’t need. Your child might fuss about keeping a particular, even if it’s broken or hasn’t been used for quite a while. Even when sediments get in the way of things, you, the parent, have to eventually make the final decision on it.
To sort your “Get Rid” pile, consider separating the toys into three groups: donate, sell, or trash. The “donate” group will be for either lending it to a family member or friend, or give to a charity. The “sell” items are for what you’ll sell online or in a yard sale. And of course, the “trash” pile—the broken toys, and old ones with no value to them—can go straight into the garbage.
The cleaning process may not be an overnight miracle for most people. But the idea is to clean every day at your pace. Once you take the time to organize your children’s toys by considering one or all of these tips provided, you’ll be free from all the clutter and stress from their next toy adventure!
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Bea Potter is a professional writer at Big Assignments and Assignment Service, and manages many national projects. In her spare time, Bea likes to travel (especially to business training events), read, and spend time tutoring at Australian Reviewer.