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Kids’ Playrooms: Turning Chaos into a Creative Space

With the whole family spending more time at home than perhaps ever before, it can

feel challenging to keep children engaged and learning when they might be feeling the

loss of their normal routine of school, activities, and playdates. We’ll share some great

ideas for turning the chaos of a child’s playroom into a well-structured space with

designated activity centers that utilizes toy rotation. The result is a room that will

encourage your children to play in imaginative, new ways, and that you might just be

able to get excited about as well.

Reading Nook

Encourage children’s love of reading by creating a cozy space in the playroom

specifically for that. Try putting a bench beneath the window in the room, setting up a

child-sized chair in the corner, or filling a small nook with a comfy mat. Be sure to

outfit the space with fun pillows and soft blankets that will help make reading a

relaxed and happy time. A nearby bookcase or shelves on the wall for all of their

favorite reads completes the area.

Costume Station

Dressing up allows children to express themselves, explore different versions of who

they might want to become (think outfits for police officers, firefighters, doctors,

etc.), as well as aids in letting their imaginations run wild. Try placing all of their

various costume pieces in a large trunk. You can really set the scene by adding a

mirror to the wall and hooks for them to place their outfits in between changes.

Separate baskets or wall shelves for props, hats, and accessories help to further

organize the space.

Art Station

No playroom is complete without an arts and crafts station. A small table with chairs

(consider adding extra for when friends are allowed over again) is a great start. Lots of

small organizers and pencil holders can help keep art supplies from feeling cluttered

and can be laid out directly on the table. An easel next to the arts and crafts table for

painting and drawing takes this activity center to the next level. A hook for nearby

aprons helps to encourage them not to ruin clothes with paint, markers, and the like.

Motor Skills Station

Classic toys like cars, trains, and tool sets help with fine motor skills. You can set up a

section of the playroom a rug that has “roadways” on it, a table with train tracks laid

out, or a toy workbench for all of those tools they acquired. Legos or any type of

building blocks are also great for this specific station.

Movement Center

If there’s enough space in the playroom and you are okay with encouraging

movement and exercise indoors, a movement station is a really fun aspect to include.

Think jump ropes and a yoga mat; or, if you’re really adventurous, add a rockclimbing wall, a slide, or monkey bars inside for little ones to burn off energy even

when the weather isn’t nice or the seasons turn cold for a true highlight to the


Toy Rotation

We all know it happens— children have a plethora of toys, and we still hear

complaints of “being bored” and “there’s nothing to do”. Oftentimes this is actually a

result of being overwhelmed with options. Adults also have trouble deciding when

there are too many appealing choices (does the last time you went to your favorite

restaurant ring a bell anyone?!). So, in addition to designating spaces in the playroom

for specific activity centers, it can be helpful to institute toy rotation as well.

In case you haven’t heard much about this method before, instead of having all of the

clutter out at once, it entails curating a selection of toys to be displayed for a certain

length of time (organizing them into activity centers helps focus play as well), and

then put the other ones in storage so they are out of sight and out of mind of your

little ones. This helps old toys feel new again once they come back into rotation.

No need for the out of rotation toys to feel as though they are taking over the rest of

your home though— try large, closed, opaque boxes and bins, and store them away in

the closet of the playroom, or, if there is no closet, perhaps on out of reach shelving.

There are so many fun, easy ways to organize a child’s playroom that don’t have to

break the bank, but can encourage new ways to approach play and learning. Simply

arranging toys by type in different areas of the room with organizers such as baskets,

shelves, and chests is a great start. Try some of the ideas listed above or explore

others based on grouping (additional ideas include games, stuffed animals and dolls,

musical instruments, etc.). You’ll turn chaos into creativity, and cultivate a space that

expands your child’s imagination, but won’t give you a headache just by looking at it!

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