Top tips on toy decluttering
With Christmas upon us soon and with the invertible influx of new toys and fads bound to grace our homes, now is a good time to start to persuade your children to donate their unwanted toys to charity or local hospitals. MOLLY MAID, the professional house cleaners, share some top tips to help you achieve this with minimal resistance from the young ones.
- Get the toy basket out or sit down on the floor in your child’s bedroom and ask them to bring you the broken toys. Then, persuade them that it’s pointless to keep broken toys (if they have no sentimental family association or reason) and that it’s good to create space for new ones that Santa may bring. If badly broken, they should be discarded rather than taken to a charity shop.
- Then, just chatting explain how sad it must be that some children have no toys to play with at all. Come to a mutual decision that it might be kind to donate a few toys to less fortunate children. Then, ask your child to choose 3 or 5 toys (depending on how much of a declutter you need to have!) that they may like to donate.
- Put the clean, unused toys in boxes and donate them to a hospital, local church, a homeless shelter, an orphanage or a charity shop.
- For the more valuable toys that your child has simply grown out of, explain that it might be good to pack these up (such a train sets or wooden sets as these will last) and save them for when they have children and store them in the loft or the garage if you have space.
- It is easy to have a huge accumulation of teddies and soft toys too. Why not suggest that some of the soft toys are not getting much attention and suggest that it might be a nice gesture to give them to children who might.
- For the most difficult to shift items that still seem to be a favourite, such as those big ugly plastic monstrosities, or huge teddies won at fairgrounds, simply remove one (at varying intervals) to somewhere that isn’t accessible to your child. Now, wait and see whether they notice or ask after it. Sometimes what is not visible isn’t front of mind! Then donate to a good cause and to somewhere your child will not come across it again!
- A good toy declutter and rummage in the toy box with your child can also spark interest in toys that they had forgotten about! So, make sure that you don’t assume that they are no longer interested them. They may simply have forgotten.
- Children can outgrow board games quickly too as they learn new skills and generally develop. If there are no younger siblings in the family, explain that it would be fun to play more grown-up or adult family games together and therefore donate this to children in hospital, who often crave the entertainment.
- Set a confined, physical space for toys – it doesn’t matter whether it’s a container, a shelving unit, a chest or a toy box! Having completed your toy decluttering, explain that once the space is full, there is no room to add more toys. Help your children understand this principle by clearly marking the boundaries. If they wish to add (such as Christmas time and birthdays), they’ll need to remove and donate an old toy first.
- Remember to de-cluttering regularly to stay on top of this new routine. Your children will soon become accustomed to this and encourage them to embrace the fact that they are giving away their toys to good causes.