Sunday, July 29, 2012

Toy Rotation - Update

We've been really enjoying our toy rotation this summer.  It's been so HOT that we've spent a lot of time escaping to our basement playroom.  Keeping up with the toy rotation has helped keep the room enjoyable.  (If you missed our first toy rotation post, you can check it out here.)

I've been working on fine tuning some aspects of the rotations. One area that we are tweaking is the number of toys for each rotation, particularly when it comes to sets and accessories.  I've found that the number really depends on which toys are in rotation.  For example, during the month of July my kids played with ONE toy - their Little Tykes Bounce House.  I also discovered that my kids do not want dress up clothes out of rotation (they threatened mutiny).  Now I choose 5 or 6 outfits each rotation so that they always have dress up clothes, but they change from time to time.

I also tried working in invitations to play.  On my second toy rotation, I turned the playroom into a store.  I added a shopping cart, turned the shelves to resemble aisles in the store and set up a table with a cash register.  I even included some posterboard and markers for the kids to create signs for their store.  The great part about this set up was that I stocked the shelves with the chosen 9-10 toys for that rotation.  They could choose to use those things as their store inventory or just play with them if they didn't feel like playing store.

Here's a picture of our current rotation:
Playroom Toy Rotation
Our most recent toy rotation

Playroom Toy Rotation
Five dress up outfits seems to be the right fit for the 3 oldest.

Playroom Toy Rotation
On this shelf: dollhouse vehicles, marble maze set, and 2 totes of dollhouse accessories (one for people and one for furniture)

Playroom Toy Rotation
On this shelf: K'nex, magnadoodle, hopscotch and doctor kit

The breakdown of toys is as follows:

  • Stick horses 
  • Hopscotch set (bottom shelf - not put together) 
  • Dollhouse vehicles
  • Doctor kit 
  • Dress up clothes 
  • Dollhouse village
  • Magna Doodle 
  • K'nex 
  • Marble Run Maze

Now, I know you might be thinking - "What's with all the dollhouses?"  I acquired all of these dollhouses without really meaning to. Two of them were gifted to us as hand-me-downs, and one I picked up at a garage sale for $1. I intended to keep one and donate the other two, but the kids and I could never agree which to keep and which to donate. The kids LOVE to set up all 3 houses and play "neighborhood" with them. They were thrilled to see that I allowed all 3 dollhouses to stay and put them into rotation at the same time. We'll see how it goes.

The totes on the shelves contain the pieces to the houses - blue for people, red for furniture. I am still unsure on the "perfect" number of accessories for toys like the dollhouse.  Pinky certainly prefers to have more so that each room can be decorated, while Wild One would be happy with a mama, a baby and a crib.  I guess only time will tell how this rotation will work for us.  I will keep you updated!

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