Back in June Reuben’s growing piles of toys was starting to get a bit overwhelming. When it hit this moment – see photo below – it was time to get some Toy Organisation in place. So I started this Organising Toys pinterest board to get some ideas for how to manage it.

Toy Organisation

Toy Town takes over!

What I decided to try was a Toy Rotation System, as advised by the lovely Mums on the Mum’s Days Facebook Page, which can be done in many ways. Always one to try and reinvent the wheel, I naturally didn’t really look into any of them in great detail.

Toy Organisation

My Toy Organisation Board – there’s some cute things on there, have a look!

My Toy Organisation – 10-15 months

After pinning a bunch of different approaches to toy organisation, I decided I liked the look of the TubTrugs best and bought 3 medium buckets in different colours. My plan was to put a selection of toys in each bucket; some with wheels, some that sort, etc. And, I would have one bucket in the living room at a time. Then after a few days, to liven things up, I’d swap it for a new one.

Toy Organisation

They’ve arrived!

This has worked quite nicely and even his bigger toys, such as his fire engine that he loves, still fit. So I’d say from the age of 10 months until now (15 months) this has been a good solution for us.

Toy Organisation

The contents of 2 of the buckets 

Toy Organisation

This is what is currently in my living room – I wouldn’t normally have 2 buckets at a time but I was going to sit and play with him before lunch and then he decided he wanted his bed!

Toy Rotation System

There’s still mayhem once he’s tipped everything out but at least it can be scooped up and everything is tidy again!

The problem, actually not so much a problem more of a quandary, I have now is:

a) he has started to ignor the bucket and requires me to pull things out before he’ll start playing with them and even then his attention span is quite short.

b) what to do as he starts to get into bigger toys.

Toy Organisation – 16 months onwards

So I am finally doing some research to see what other people have successfully done!

Apparently there are 2 main approaches to child play – Montessori and Waldorf. And, they both agree that if there are too many toys out babe (and mum) get confused by the choice and the mess. Little Stories has explained here why you should do toy rotation and how to get started. Based on this Triple T Mum has developed a toy rotation system with a spreadsheet. She says to sort your toys into:

  1. Thinking Toys (I suppose these would be shape sorters, stacking cups, hoop stacker, etc);
  2. Moving Toys;
  3. Pretending Toys; and
  4. Static Toys (the toys that are left out all the time and don’t get rotated).

At this stage Reuben will entertain Thinking Toys for a time – he likes stacking the hoops for example but then it soon becomes a throwing game, which is dangerous for all in the vicinity.

He LOVES moving toys and takes his tractor, fire engine, bus, big cars, little cars on a tour of the house one by one.

But he isn’t into pretending toys yet. He doesn’t do soft toys or teddies. Won’t even look at them. He might take a sip from a cup but then throw it across the room. So, this one isn’t overly high on my radar at this point. Having said he’s started to pay an interest in Gabby’s Princess Kitchen, which Gabby says she’s giving him for Christmas! He also LOVES the animals at his childminders house and makes a beeline for them, roaring as he goes. So maybe I just don’t have the right pretending toys…Christmas?!

In terms of static toys, we have his walker (as he’s still not walking!), his books, which he likes to read on the sofa (and then throw across the room – are you getting the theme here?!), and some building blocks, which he hasn’t quite got the hang of but is working on it. Everything else rotates.

Toy Organisation

So, I guess we’re at the stage now where I will consolidate his toys into the categories above and see how he gets on. Any bigger toys will also have to be on a rotation. For example, he’s getting a Fisher Price Little People’s Garage for Christmas from my mum. So…

What do you think? Do you think this Toy Organisation system will work or do you do something different? Please do share what you do!