If you have a preschooler or young toddler, chances are you are spending a significant amount of your time in a home playroom. This may be a room you built specifically in your home or just a spare area that became the haphazard toy junk room quite by accident.
However, this came to be a kid-zone, spending a little time organizing and decorating can take your playroom from chaos to a peaceful safe space in no time. Simply follow these tips on how to get the playroom you want, and help your children learn while playing.
Have a place for everything. Toy bins for stuffed animals, shelving for puzzles, and a spot for each type of activity is a great way to find what your children want to play with quickly and keep your sanity intact when cleaning up at the end of the day. Adding a chore chart to make sure everyone has a task at the end of play will help teach teamwork and responsibility.
Create a mess-free art space. Dry erase boards are a great way to encourage writing and free-hand drawing and are amazingly easy to clean. If you happen to leave the marker on a little too long, a dab of rubbing alcohol will take it off with ease. If you’d rather something less confining to a certain area, chalkboard paint can be applied to just about any smooth surface. Tables, old mirrors or any amount of wall space can be turned into a chalkboard.
Instead of framing playful art, try framing alphabet letters or numbers. Playroom art can be very cute, but something your child looks at every day should teach them some basic lessons without them realizing it. Framing elements of the alphabet can assist your child in learning to recognize letters, which is an important step to reading and writing. Point out toys that begin with that letter, then ask them to find the letter on the wall.
Keep an old treasure trove of dress up clothing to encourage imagination. Imaginative play is very important to the brain development of young children. Being able to play independently or with others while creating a fictional world shows they are problem solving, and constructive thinkers. Having various pieces of clothing to add to their play will help them to create their own characters.
Have a space simply for quiet play or reading. A cozy corner with a bookshelf and some large throw pillows can encourage your child to spend a little time just being quiet with a book. If you prefer natural light, having this space close to the window, but be sure to add a simple lamp for cloudy or rainy days. This can also be a way to spend time together if you child is not able to read on their own yet. It’s recommended that children should be read to daily, culminating in about one thousand books before their kindergarten year.