Thanks for visiting my blog. Hope you find some helpful hints for organizing your time and space. My passions are to help you make home a refuge instead of a crisis center, and to help you function in peace rather than chaos - at home or at work. I have switched my main blog to 1-2-3 ... Get Organized on WordPress, so please visit me there.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Helping Your Child Declutter Toys Before Christmas

This is a great time of year to encourage your child to declutter his/her toys - before being inundated with more! Before a birthday is another good time to declutter. Even three- and four-year olds can grasp the concepts of outgrown toys, generosity, and order.

How to encourage your child to get rid of excess:

- Help your child envision giving toys to a younger friend or sibling, a disadvantaged child, your church or a charity.
One of our foster daughters kept picturing her clothes making a younger child happy, which motivated her to get rid of four bags of clothes!

- Be sensitive to your child's sentimental favorites, yet help him learn to discriminate between favorites and toys that have lost their appeal.

- If your child is having difficulty, make it a two-step process. One of our daughters agreed to putting a bag of stuffed animals in the attic. After several months, she was able to part with many of them.

- Determine ahead of time how much toy storage your child's room will allow or how much storage you will allow. These may be two different things! Just because a room has space, doesn't mean it needs to be jam-packed! When you're out of storage space, toys must be discarded or put away. (We put a way two-thirds of our girls' toys and swapped out toys three times a year.)

- Create limits - so many of one type of toy. If a new one comes in, an old one goes out.

- Discard broken toys or those that have missing pieces.

If your child declutters a couple of times a year, excess will be controlled, and her room will be manageable and pleasant.

Here are a couple of interesting places to send discarded items:

EcoEncore.org will take used hardback books, CDs, DVDs, software and games. These items are then resold with the profits going to environmental groups that help protect waterways, forests, shorelines, hiking trails and more. Be sure to take a look at their guidelines before sending anything.

Cottonfrombluetogreen.org - Donate old jeans and your denim will be recycled into insulation to be used for rebuilding areas struck by natural disasters. To start a denim drive, use the contact form on the website.

More help on organizing your child's room:
Three Steps to Organizing Your Child's Room - Creating a Fun and Functional Room for Your Child

Magnetic Paint - An Innovative Space Saver!
Organizing Legos - Or Not
Organizing "Messy" Toys


logos coaching said...

I think it is a wonderful idea to encourage children to declutter in the lead up to christmas. Not only does it get rid off unwanted or broken toys (making life easier for he/she who cleans) but it also teaches children the habit of regularly getting rid of possessions that they no longer need or want which will hopefully continue with them into adulthood.

Anonymous said...

My mother just sent me your blog and I have been going through and reading your posts. This one stood out to me for some reason.

Our son is almost two and just today I went through and organized his toys.

My SIL has 2 daughters and one step daughter that is with them half the time. Ages 9, 3, and 1. The two older ones wouldnt "keep their room clean" so she took out half the toys, which was in 6 large yard garbage bags. I think as parents it is our job to teach our children to rotate and get rid of, so you dont end up with 6 bags of toys in the garage and having to tell Santa that your children get NO toys for Christmas. Your plan is a good way to go through and help the children learn.

Thank for the post again!