Monday, January 9, 2012

A SIMPLE Toy Rotation

Now that Christmas is over, we see once again how much money seems to be wasted on toys that are played with for a few days and then forgotten about.  As parents, I'm also sure you have had the experience of going to a friends house where there are less toys, or even relatively similar toys as yours, and your kids are excited to play with everything!  Why don't they do that with their own toys, we wonder. 

A toy rotation helps keep toys new and exciting in a child's mind.  I have always felt overwhelmed by a toy rotation because I thought it meant splitting up my children's already small collection and remembering to change them out at a certain interval.  It just seemed like too much work.  I just read in Jamie Martin's "Steady Days" about a different toy rotation that I think I can do.

Choose a certain toy/toys for each day of the week that you can also engage in play with.  At a certain time each day, pull out that day's toy and play with your children.  This kills two birds with one stone.  It keeps some toys special and "new" and it reminds you to play with your kids. 

I sat down and made my rotation yesterday.  I thought of the toys that I know my children enjoy but that just sit idle when they get overwhelmed by too many toy choices.  My rotation is subject to change, but right now it looks like this.

M - Blocks
T - Little People
W - Tent and tunnels
Th - Ride-on toys
F - Potato Heads

Just as a last note.  I think toy rotation are mostly beneficial for toddlers and preschoolers.  Around 5-6 years old, children starting making a plan for their play instead of just letting it coming to them, and having their full assortment of toys helps to deepen the imaginative play.  Younger children, however, get overwhelmed with too many choices and end up playing with nothing.  Analyze your families needs and do what feels right, and works for you.

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