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Teaching Your Child How To Take Care of Their Toys

Written by Dr. Kimberly Dozier-Thornton

  • Make Clean-ups Routine
    • For young toddlers, have clean up time at the end of the day at the same time of day as part of the daily routine
    • For children 3 and up, clean up after each task or activity before moving on to the next activity
  • Keep the number of Toys Low
    • Limit how many toys are out each week to avoid an overwhelming number of choices
    • Rotate the toys to reduce clutter and allow your child to enjoy them longer
  • Be flexible
    • Keep a special corner for “projects in progress” thus respecting your child’s desire to come back to it yet keeping it contained
  • Make It Fun
    • Turn cleaning up into a fun game and have a sing-a-long clean up song
    • Make it a race: can you clean up 10 items before the timer goes off?
    • Make it a game: can you pick up all the green toys?
  • Break up the work
    • Tackle areas in sections
    • Share the work by tackling the tougher jobs and letting your little one handle the age appropriate tasks
  • Everything has its place
    • Keep chaos under control by having designated areas, bins and shelves for certain toys
  • Praise is Everything
    • Be sure to acknowledge their hard work and motivate them to do it again the next day
How to Teach Toddlers to Pick Up Their Toys (

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