Organizing toys so the kids know how to clean up!

I do not know why, but my kids toys need to be organized!  I guess I figure if they can’t find the pieces and toys are all over the place they will not go play with them.  Or maybe I just do not function well in chaos…

I am sure some of you are OK with just throwing all the toys into the same toy chest, out of sight out of mind right?  Not for me I have nightmares about those toys coming to life, like in Toy Story.

So the first thing I did was clean up and go through all the toys.  I do not keep toys that come from McDonald’s or that are broken.  I figure there are enough toys around that I do  not need to keep the random broken toys around.

I then went around and took over 50 pictures of the toys in their nice and organized bins and shelves.

Next I added words to the pictures using Picnic.  Like “blocks”, “Babies”, “Play Food” etc… to help my kids start to recognize words and learn to read.

I then printed the photos off at Costco for only a few dollars.

I brought the pictures home and taped them up around the room, on the shelves and coordinating boxes.

I have mentioned before how I run a preschool out of my home.  You would be amazed at how messy 15 preschoolers can make a room in a 45 minute play time (or maybe you would not!)  But I know you would be impressed to see how quickly these same preschoolers clean up.

On the first day of preschool I explained to them about matching the toys with the pictures and the first clean up time went amazingly well.  I was so impressed!

So if you are looking for a way to save a lot of your time and alleviate all of your frustrations, label and organize your toys.  I am so glad I did!

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