Toy Rotation is the System that saved my sanity with 4 kids. It can save yours, too. 

 

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Toy rotation is one of the best systems to implement in your home. If you are looking for new ways to entertain your busy toddler can be exhausting. With their big energy in such a tiny body, it’s important to take the time to teach your kids how to play in the preschool age group. 

 

One of the simplest and most popular ways to teach your child how to play? Using a decades old system known as Toy Rotation

 

While implementing a toy rotation for your preschool is simple, it does require a few rules in order to be successful. 

 

Ready to learn all about toy rotation? Keep reading…

 

What is Toy Rotation?

 

Using a toy rotation system is simply limiting the amount of toys that your child has access to at one time and updating them on a regular basis in a designated play area. 

 

The goal is to let your children come up with different ways to play with a limited number of toys. This means setting one 2-3 open ended, play-based toys out and letting your preschooler use their imagination. 

 

Toy rotation began with the development of the popular preschool method Montessori and is used by parents all around the world. 

 

How Often Do You Rotate Toys? 

 

For each family, the rotating toy schedule will look different. In general, the length of time is to change the toys every month. Before you switch out the old toys, take a few days and observe what toys your child is gravitating toward. This will help you decide what toys are best for their play. 

 

To make this fun, add in a few themed toys for the month! 

 

Toy Storage For Toy Rotation

 

Personally, I love to have my toddler toys set up in rotation bins to help me stay as organized as possible and so I have easy access to the next set of toys.

Toy bins for storing different areas of a toy rotation for young children

I try to sort toys into categories that make the most sense for whatever we are learning and what will keep the child’s interest high.

 

Benefits of Toy Rotation

 

At any given time, one of the easiest ways to help your kids have new experiences on a daily basis.

 

  • Helps keep toys seem new and exciting for longer
  • Develops your child’s ability to focus. Without the consistent distraction of something else to play with, they will be able to focus longer on one activity
  • Toy Rotation can instill creativity. Since they only have a few open-ended toys to interact with, you will watch their imagination develop from play in front of your very eyes. 
  • Encourage independent play. One of the greatest gifts that we can give our children is the ability to create and explore their own worlds. Toy rotation is an ideal method to help create that. 
  • Eliminates toy clutter. Oftentimes, having access to a lot of toys can lead to more mess, faster (especially in the living room).
  • Less clutter means less time cleaning at nap time.
  • You can use them for learning opportunities! If your toddler is learning about the letter K, pull out their play kitchen and other types of toys that start with the letter k.
  • Having designated play space is a great way to keep their play contained so that fewer toys are out at once.

 

Basic Toy Rules for Implementing a Toy Rotation

 

When it comes to deciding what type of toy is in your toy rotation, you want to make sure that your child’s toys are 2 things: 

  • 1) Open-ended
  • 2) Play-based

What does that mean? It means finding quality toys that help develop skills and can be played with in a variety of ways. 

 

A few rules to help ensure that toy rotation work in your home: 

  • No battery operated toys
  • Choose toys that they will enjoy playing with
  • Oftentimes, the simpler the better
  • Pretend play is the goal- even with older children

 

How often do you switch to different toys?

 

While you do not need to implement a daily toy rotation, I like to switch out the toys for my kids every 2-4 weeks. This is dependent on what they are invested in (are the toys I have available their favorite toys?) and what good habits am I trying to implement.

 

If I am trying to develop my child’s ability to clean, then I might leave out the available toys that encourage replicating what I am doing like cleaning toy sets (one of my absolute favorite things!)

 

Examples of the Best Rotation Toys

 

The good news about implementing a toy rotation is that you can get started almost right away with toys that you already have. The best way is to have a few new toys to help ensure that you and your toddler have the best experience with toy rotations. Integrate the newer toys with their current toys and watch the magic happen.

 

Keep reading to learn about a few of my favorites for toy rotations…

 

Wooden Lacing Beads

 

This adorable toy set is perfect for preschoolers! It comes with several dozen wooden beads that are the perfect size for toddler hands. Kids will sit and play with these beads for hours through threading, stacking, and sorting into different piles. 

 

These Wooden Lacing Beads are the perfect gift and you can grab them HERE.

 

Melissa and Doug Dust, Sweep, and Mop

 

Not only does this toy promote hours of independent play, it also encourages the child to help out with chores around the house. Recommended for ages 3-6, this Dust, Sweep, and Mop from Melissa and Doug has thousands of positive reviews and would be the perfect gift for any preschooler. 

 

Rainbow Stacker

 

For one, the colors will draw any child in for play- just look at it! 

 

The other reason is its unique shape to help kids’ imagination soar as well as develop their engineering skills through the hundreds of builds that this toy can create. 

 

Wooden Musical Pounding Toy

 

This toy is perfect to entertain your toddler for hours at a time. It is the perfect combination of practicing hand/eye coordination and super fun sounds. Any toddler would love this toy! 

 

Any mother would be thrilled to see their child receive this gift. It promotes fine motor development through improving dexterity, arm movement, and cause and effect.  

 

This Wooden Musical Pounding Toy is so great, that it actually won the 2018 Cribsie Award for being the best first musical toy for a child! Grab one HERE.

 

In Summary to Toy Rotation

 

Implementing a toy rotation is one of the simplest and most effective ways to bring endless benefits to your child’s development. From developing skills like how to play independently to fostering their creativity, having a toy rotation in your home is worth it.

 

Want to learn more? Check out these articles from Toddler and Mom! 

 

 

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