Organize Your Kids’ Toys

by Jamie Lieberman

How many times have you looking in your little one’s room and wondered when the tornado hit? It happens to me on a daily basis, forcing me into a constant loop of cleaning and organizing. I recently decided that I could use that time more wisely (like sitting and enjoying a cup of coffee), so I embarked on a mission to organize my son’s toys.

organize your kids toys

Take inventory

Start by putting all of the toys in a pile in the middle of your living room. Scary? Maybe. But a necessary first step. Look at each toy and determine whether it is in good working order (no broken or missing parts, peeling paint, etc.) and age appropriate. Then ask yourself whether your child still plays with the toy.

Donate, store, sell or throw away

After sorting through the toys, put each one you are not keeping in a pile to either be donated, stored, sold or thrown away. If you can, do this while your child is napping or out of the house. The last thing you need to hear is eleventh hour speeches about why he cannot live without the monster truck with the missing wheel.

Group like things together

Now that you have a pile of toys that you are keeping, sort the toys so like toys are together. You may be surprised at how many of the same type of toy your child has accumulated. My son magically had eight balls. Yes, that’s right. Eight. Have your child choose one or two of his favorite toys where you have multiples and store or donate the rest. You can save space and teach a valuable lesson!

Invest in bins or baskets

Group like items together and store them in bins or baskets that you will be happy to look at all day. I choose wicker baskets that matched my decor and are short enough so that my son can reach the toy he wants and put it away when is done.

Use ziploc or lingerie bags to store small pieces

As kids get older, the pieces get smaller. We have lost more puzzle pieces because they were loose in the basket. Now, I gather the pieces that go with each toy and put them in either a ziploc or mesh lingerie bag. We have managed to hold on to most of his toys and can locate the pieces quickly.

My son’s room is finally organized and less cluttered. I feel great and, in a very surprising turn of events, he seems happier to have less choices. It is a win/win!

Find more blog posts about how to get organized and link up your own blog post.

Your Turn

How do your organize your little one’s toys?



Email Author    |    Website About Jamie Lieberman

Jamie is an intern for 5 Minutes for Mom. She is also a co-founder and writer for twohappymamas. When she is not playing with her son or teaching, you can also find her on Twitter or on Facebook.

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{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

1 vickie couturier August 2, 2013 at 12:43 pm

thanks for some new ideals,,never can have too many storage places for kids stuff

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2 Jamie August 4, 2013 at 9:55 pm

Glad you liked the post!

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3 June S. August 2, 2013 at 2:30 pm

I have been doing these type of things for years. If it has not been used in a long time it gets donated.

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4 Anne August 2, 2013 at 4:11 pm

Great ideas which I follow and will keep doing.

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5 Mia Dentice Carey August 2, 2013 at 8:54 pm

Everything must have a place…it helped my son so much…I rarely have any problems with his room =)

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6 Kimberly August 2, 2013 at 11:14 pm

I do most of these things. We just went through a bunch of stuff and my son held his own yard sale. Organized, set up, sat there all day, and made 20 bucks. To him it was worth it. To me – I would have just donated all of it. :)

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7 Barbara Platt August 3, 2013 at 3:45 am

I started working on it, I just haven’t accomplished it yet. But, soon.I hope.

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8 Alvina Castro August 3, 2013 at 4:38 am

I actually just did this. We always do seasonal clean ups and reorganize so this helps give me more ideas

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9 michelle b. August 3, 2013 at 5:08 am

Organizing toys is more difficult when you have a lot of kids in the family. Like your ideas.

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10 Jamie August 4, 2013 at 9:56 pm

Thanks! I hope it helped!

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11 Jenette August 3, 2013 at 1:48 pm

This is one thing I have yet to successfully do; thanks for the tips!

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12 Mary Dailey August 4, 2013 at 5:31 pm

I am also a big believer in donating toys to charity. Kids outgrow toys so fast, they hardly get to play with them very long and they still often look brand new.

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13 happymomc August 5, 2013 at 10:56 am

great tips, I follow some and will follow the others from now on!

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14 LaVonne August 5, 2013 at 11:46 pm

I try to do these things but still have a hard time. It is a daily task that is for sure. I just need to downsize on the toys. My kids have way too many!

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15 Jilian Deerkoski August 6, 2013 at 8:13 pm

I repurpose cardboard boxes and utilize all under the bed space for all of the boys’ things.

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16 Kylae J August 7, 2013 at 12:20 am

What a great idea, a yard sale! Why haven’t I thought of that before? :)

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17 Jenny Martin August 8, 2013 at 12:05 pm

We use ziplocs to store all the little lego pieces of a kit–and store all the lego directions in a box!

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18 cheri August 8, 2013 at 8:55 pm

WE just sneak throw away things when she is not looking. :)

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19 Tina August 10, 2013 at 2:50 am

I do organize my son’s lego pieces I have them in plastic bins as for the rest of his toys I try but have not accomplished it yet but one day I know I will. Thank you for sharing these wonderful tips.

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20 Ave August 10, 2013 at 6:27 am

I use different Ikea bins to store my baby’s toys. Got some great ideas from your post! Thanks for sharing.

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21 Stephanie August 17, 2013 at 1:28 am

I wish I was better at this but I do often go through their stuff to get rid of toys that do not get played with often.

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22 The Savvy Bump August 19, 2013 at 9:44 pm

Bins and baskets are my favorite way to organize toys! Donating and purging also helps a lot. I love the ziploc idea – I needed an idea for organizing the small toys so thanks!

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23 jessica August 21, 2013 at 9:58 pm

baskets are my favorite way to organize

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24 Mozi Esmes mom August 23, 2013 at 4:32 pm

Go through and add to a memory box each year. That alleviates some of the pain of getting rid of the things she’s outgrown…

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25 mrsshukra August 23, 2013 at 6:57 pm

Appreciate these helpful tips!

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26 Kelly Brown August 25, 2013 at 6:51 pm

I always have trouble keeping their things organized…I love getting some new tips!

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27 nikki August 28, 2013 at 7:31 am

thanks for the great ideas

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28 Stephanie Bodine August 28, 2013 at 8:37 am

Thanks so much for this post! Perfect timing for me to read post as I am going to organize daughters toys and room this weekend. Thanks for all the great ideas!

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29 The Gang's Momma August 28, 2013 at 12:59 pm

We really don’t have a system like this but we have one cabinet for arts/crafts/educational games. One cabinet for Little People galore. One toybox for baby toys. And the big girl books are upstairs to protect the paper pages. We’re too spread out in ages (19-2) to have it be much differently for now….

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30 Diane Cooper August 30, 2013 at 11:46 pm

I have the best intentions on paring down the toys, then I am scared they will be sad something is gone, so I end up keeping their toys until the kids decide to donate them.

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