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Every mom knows that a day of summertime indoor play will involve at least one sibling fight, a trail of toys strewn throughout the house and multiple attempts to try and drive you up a wall. Stimulating their minds during the summer season before heading back to school is a full-time job all in itself but it can be easier if you have the right tools and space. This scenario doesn’t sound like a productive day of play, but you can limit the chaos by trying these five tips to organize the playroom and make it enjoyable, safe and fun.

Playroom image by eren {sea+prairie} via Flickr.

Designate a Spot

Your kids have fun playing and you stay sane when you choose one spot in the house for organized toy storage. That spot can be the back half of the living room or the entire basement; the location isn’t as important as making the space functional for your family. To accomplish that, we recommend you:

  • Install saloon or sliding doors, folding screens or drapery panels for privacy and boundaries.
  • Hang a roller shade on the window to insulate the room from the summer’s heat.
  • Make sure the kids know the boundaries as to what is their space and what is ‘adult’ space.

Store Everything

Storage bin image by cbgrfx123 via Flickr.

Toy boxes hold and hide tons of toys. Use clear bins in a variety of sizes instead. They store similar items together and help your kids keep the art supplies, puzzles, cars, stuffed animals and blocks separate. To use bins, label each one with a picture and words that describe its contents. Stack the bins near their station in the playroom. For example, stack the art bins next to the easel and the dress up bins near the unbreakable mirrors on the wall.

Some other effective storage solutions to keep the playroom functional and organized include:

  • Nets
  • Shelves
  • Hooks
  • Benches
  • Baskets
  • Clear jewelry organizers
  • Spinning desk organizers
  • Stacking suitcases

Encourage Creativity

A playroom should promote creativity, imagination and fun. Dr. Sandra Crosser reports on that these essential elements of your child’s day, particularly if drawing is involved, help kids develop crucial life skills. Encourage your child’s development and provide beneficial play when you:

  • Decorate the walls with bright paint, colorful murals and maps
  • Utilize peg and magnet boards that display artwork
  • Install flooring that’s easy to clean if paint spills or markers miss the paper
  • Include toys that promote creativity, imagination, problem solving and teamwork

Simplify the Stuff

If your playroom looks like a storm zone, make time to simplify. A cluttered playroom overstimulates your kids and prevents them from knowing how to clean up properly. Alternatively, a simplified playroom limits toys, maintains order and stores everything neatly. Achieve a simple, neat playroom when you:

  • Cull broken toys once a month
  • Rotate seasonal toys
  • Sell, donate or toss outgrown or unwanted toys annually

Stock Furniture

Furniture enhances the play experience. In addition to storage, stock the playroom with kid-sized tables, chairs, art easels, bookshelves, plush chairs, floor pillows and carpet squares.

Organizing a playroom involves more than placing all the toys in one room. You have to create a system that makes everything accessible and easy to put away. Then, your kids have fun in their playroom, learn important developmental skills and stay out of areas they shouldn’t be playing in.