Wednesday, June 15

A Tour of the Playroom

I recently rearranged the playroom. The rearranging of the playroom seems to happen periodically throughout the year. Whenever I find things not working (which usually involves lack of space) or find that my daughters aren't spending much time in it (playing in other areas of the house instead), then I feel the need to rearrange. Whenever I rearrange there is an immediate interest in the playroom again (usually while I'm in the process of rearranging, which is why I sometimes will wait until after my daughters are asleep to move things). Despite the frequent rearranging I am careful to keep some things the same. The large pieces in the room may move but I try my best to keep the baskets of toys in the same spots on the shelves, items in the same cupboard, and toys stored under the same play stand. It can be very frustrating and confusing for anyone to not know where a toy was moved to or where it goes when it is time to clean up. Keeping the shelves organized by not rearranging the contents helps provide stability amongst the bigger changes.

This is our playroom. We live in a three bedroom ranch style home. My daughters share a bedroom so that the other bedroom can be used as the playroom. The bedrooms are not big (by my standards or big enough I should say) so space is limited. I try to be careful not to over fill the space and at this point I feel like we have just enough in this little playroom. It can be difficult to balance toys that I value, toys we are given and toys that are routinely used and it took awhile to figure it all out. There are a few toys that are stored in the closet and when my daughters ask for them I bring them out.

This play stand is often used for playing store, a desk for an "office", a table and probably many other things I don't know about. Sometimes a play silk hangs from the top bar to create a little home behind it in the kitchen area.

On the other side of this play stand is a vintage phone, tea party props, a cash register for "store", a basket for blankets, an empty basket for using as a suitcase or picnic basket, and a crate to hold the doll clothes.

Across from the play stand is the kitchen/house play area. The high chair, baby carriers, and kitchen make up this little corner.

The play kitchen holds dishes on the top, pots and cooking utensils on the counter, a small baking sheet with play cookies and a muffin tin with play cupcakes inside the oven, and a basket of play food and a basket of play ice-cream scoops behind the curtain. Items are always returned to the same spot at clean up time so that each is easy to find for the next playtime.

Next to the kitchen, as part of house play, is the doll area. A soft rug for sitting or changing a baby, and the cribs to put them to sleep. Sometimes if I'm cleaning up and notice a doll lacking clothing or laying half in a crib, I will stop and dress the doll and neatly tuck it into bed. My daughters always notice when I have taken time to dress a doll and arrange it in a high chair or crib sometimes placing a bottle or play food with it. Doing this models a caring attitude, the kind of attitude I want them to have about their belongings and others. Next to the cribs is a small trunk for dress up clothes. This is where the dresses, shoes, hats and accessories are stored.

The train table. It takes up a significant amount of space but I like the fact that toys can be left out on it so play can continue whenever. Having an area where toys are up of the floor is helpful, that way we aren't tripping over them, they don't get lost as easily, and if someone spends significant time building something it doesn't have to be taken apart and put away at the end of play.

Under the train table is a large basket holding more dolls and a few special stuffed animals. The box on the left holds purses and bags. Baskets and boxes are good in the fact that they help regulate quantity. The bag and purse box is pretty full so that we know if we are given more we need to go through it and use the "one in- one out" rule.

We also have a music corner in the room. The bell collection (still growing), little piano, and a basket of instruments sits in the cupboard.

On top of the music cupboard sits a basket of knitted bean bags and our handmade streamers. These two items are great for movement whether it is moving to music they are creating or music they ask to listen to from cd.

Doll dresses hang from the play stand.

Large baskets under the play stand hold a collection of song birds and the pink basket holds a variety of different sized balls. Having different styles and colors of baskets helps for quickly identifying the location of toys.

And now the tour is complete, thanks for stopping by!


Unknown said...

Thank you thank you thank you. I think this will help us in our playroom too!!

noelle said...

beautiful! love what you have done with this room. great inspiration for me as we try to work our play space. thanks!

Teena said...

Thanks for sharing! I love how everything is so organized.

Olives and Pickles said...


Carrie said...

I love it!

Unknown said...

cute and functional!

Queen of the Nook said...

Lovely! I too love to make sure the babies are cared for, and sometimes I arrange the stuffed animals or dolls in a little tableau scene doing something (tea party, playing blocks, taking a bath). My daughter loves finding them and talks about it all day.

Monica said...

Thanks for posting this! I'm in the process of reorganizing our play area as well as our Montessori materials, too. Would you consider doing a tour of your Montessori space? I'm grateful for all the great ideas you've shared.

Mel said...

Thank you for the wonderful inspiration. It is beautiful to look at! We also are enjoying the songs you have posted on YouTube. Thanks!

Gigi said...

Beautiful play room! Thank you for the tour!

Carrie said...

the playroom looks great.I love how you arranged everything and made such good use of the space !