So many parents struggle with this… Especially during times of transition in their child’s life. Let’s have a look at some of the reasons why your children may be “leaving a mess everywhere they go” and how to teach them to pick up their toys.
Toys can be a huge source of stress for many mothers.
It’s as though they proliferate like rabbits as we sleep, and suddenly there are more. Everywhere.
Not with their other friends, nor in the identical crates they arrived in. They’re all over the place. This leads mums to several options for reducing toy clutter:
- purchasing less toys
- Rotating the toys you already have
- cleaning up after the kids every day
- devising tidying routines to keep the mess down
- putting all the toys in a playroom where you can close the door
- putting baskets strategically around the house
How To Teach Kids To Pick Up Toys
Keeping Things Organized
Is it true that the more toys kids have, the more bored they appear to be?
I’ve witnessed this phenomenon… and I feel it is because of clutter. When children do not pick up their toys, they lose interest in them.
Kids make a bigger mess when they don’t pick up their toys. I believe we should encourage our children to organise their toys so that they can be proud of how nice and organised they are.
- “What a lovely play environment you have when your toys are well organised.”
- “I love how you put your toys back on the shelf… “I enjoy seeing a well-organized room.”
You can even use the organising of their toys as fun play for them when they are small. My oldest son used to enjoy arranging his toy cars as he placed them back into their carrier.
Baskets are a simple method to organise specific play zones. Simply training kids to organise that “kind of toy” into this specific container can help you eliminate clutter.
Create A Routine
Every mom should have specific cleaning habits for different times of the day.
This will assist them avoid having a large toy collection that gets overwhelming for their child.
However, in the meanwhile… I’ve discovered that my children make the most messes while we’re rushing about.
Tips for when life gets busy and the “in-betweens” don’t leave much time for cleaning:
- Set the expectation that the kids will tidy up after themselves. Make sure the kids are used to having to clean up after themselves. Cleaning up after each play session is fantastic, but kids should also clean up whenever you ask. If this precedent is established, there will be much less pushback.
- Give a 5 minute notice, followed by a 2 minute warning. So… when you say 5 minutes, you mean it’s time to play the final few minutes. When you say 2 minutes, it’s time to put it up IMMEDIATELY. This takes some practise, but it will eliminate the throw it down and run out problem.
- Make guidelines on what kids may and cannot do at specific times. For example, if you know you’ll only have 30 minutes before leaving for baseball practise, don’t bring out the hand’s on science kit. Some things are simply not appropriate soon before dinner or right before bed.
Take Personality Into Consideration
Let’s be honest… Not every child enjoys color-coordinating their belongings as they store them.
They simply do not.
Some children will enjoy organising and arranging their toys nicely on the shelf. It’s a characteristic of their personality. Others enjoy the chaos of disorganised things. Their personality encourages a more creative side.
Neither is incorrect. They simply need to be taught various methods to pick up their toys.
To put it another way, what works for one child may not work for another.
So, if your child is the more organised type, give them space and time to organise their play area. Show children the beauty of keeping a tidy room.
They will be happier as a result.
Allow your child to make messes if he or she is the type who thrives on “toy mayhem.” However, before going on to a different type of toy, make them empty their trash into a designated basket.
Get Rid Of Toys Sometimes
Consider things from your child’s point of view.
Toy disposal will be handled differently by children of various ages and personalities. Throwing out a baby’s toy may not seem like a big thing, but older children may feel violated by this behaviour.
The aim here is to persuade them to support your plan. So, consider it from their point of view and devise a toy disposal strategy that works for everyone.
Here are some ideas for getting rid of toys.
- To get rid of toys, use special occasions: Consider Christmas: while the kids are enthusiastic about their new toys, the old ones must go to make room on the shelf.
- Have a fun organising day: This might be a pleasant day. You can express your appreciation by donating new (unbroken) toys to a children’s home or donation centre.
- Teach them the value of less: Everything has a place, and knowing where it is makes it easier to have fun.