Thank you to Kidecals for providing complimentary product samples for us to complete this toy organization project. All opinions expressed are my own.
I am a firm believer that everything should have a place and that, if I go through the trouble of making sure something has a place, then our children should be able to clean up their toys 100% at the end of the day. Unfortunately, they just do not seem to grasp that logic. For example, a couple of years ago, my husband and I bought a basic wired baker's rack type shelving and filled it with plastic bins about the size of shoeboxes plus some larger ones. We helped the children separate their toys into each bin and felt pretty great about how organized all their small toys were. This feeling did not last long though . . .
It did not take long for us to realize that our children were not putting the toys back in the right bins even though they could see what was inside each bin. At the time, we just tried to police it, which was exhausting. Now that our 6 year old twins can read, I am able to clearly label each bin, so that they cannot claim to put something in the wrong place accidentally.
Today's Project: Small Toy Organization
Plastic Storage Bins (shoebox size or larger)
Custom Playroom Labels (2 sheets per carousel)
Step 1. Make a list of items you need to keep organized. Then visit Kidecal's Playroom Labels product page to create your labels. Each sheet of labels comes with 6 large labels to use on the plastic bins and 12 small labels to use on the carousel organizer. Each field corresponds to a label in the preview, so you can see what the final labels will look like. If you are really organized, you can color code your labels so that all red labels belong to one child and all yellow ones belong to another. (I am not that organized.) These labels are both dishwasher and laundry-safe, so they will work on both smooth surfaces and on fabrics, such as canvas.
Step 2. After you have assigned a toy category for each plastic bin, carefully place the larger labels on the correct bins. If you need to reposition them, you will need to remove them immediately before the adhesive sets.
Step 3. After you have decided what should go in each pocket on the carousels, place the correct small label on each pocket. Try to plan ahead. For example, it seemed to make more sense to put the Barbie dolls on the bottom tier since they were the tallest of all the small toys.
Step 4. This is the toughest part of this project. Get your children to put everything in the empty bins and pockets. I think if they do the work of finishing this project themselves, they may be more motivated to keep everything organized. (Of course, this is just a theory.)
The things I liked most about these Playroom Labels are that they are easier to read than any labels I've ever made with a label maker, I could be as specific or as general as I wanted with the labels (ex. Action Figures vs. Star Wars Figures), and the labels stick amazingly well on fabric, even on the extremely wrinkled canvas pockets. Each sheet of 18 custom waterproof and laundry-safe labels sells for $15.00 plus there is Free Shipping on all orders.
To find more unique label products, including chalkboard decals, keycals (keyboard decals), "from the garden of" labels, "from the brewery of" labels, and mustache labels, visit www.kidecals.com.