Toy rotation is a simple solution to a common problem. Most children today have too many toys, and feel overwhelmed by choice. In toy rotation, instead of having all the toys in the playroom out at once, you divide them into smaller, more manageable groups and switch them around on a regular basis.
This post will cover the steps involved in toy rotation to get you started today.
Step One: Set Up Toy Rotation Boxes.
You will need one box for each rotation you plan on having. You can use plastic storage boxes, baskets, laundry baskets, or whatever you have available. This will depend on how many toys you have and how frequently you will rotate them.
Step Two: Sort the Toys.
Sort the toys by their intent: Thinking toys, Moving Toys, and Imaginative toys. Each rotation should have a variety of both, so that all skills have a chance for development on each rotation.
Step Three: Rotate the Toys Regularly.
Each grouping of toys should be rotated every one to four weeks (more often with a smaller toy rotation box). Some people will advocate for longer durations for rotation. If you have a lot of toys in each rotation this works, but you're getting away from the point to some extent. The idea is to focus their attention on a select number of toys at a time. Generally speaking, smaller, quicker rotations should be the goal but it's whatever works for your family!
Step Four: Keep an Eye on It!
Toy rotations can get very interesting (cars go with rainbows?), so it is important to be sure that your child is still using the toy for the purpose you set when you first created your toy rotation system. For instance, a child who likes to line up his cars in a row might not use the railroad track in the "Use Less Often" box very often because he never gets to see them all together at once! So make sure you're adapting and improvising as you go.
Step Five: Start Toy Rotation Today!
Toy rotation will help keep your home organized while teaching children responsibility and independence. If you haven't done so already, create toy rotation boxes for your children, and start switching toys between them as soon as possible!