do children have too many toys?

Sophrona - posted on 07/05/2009 ( 23 moms have responded )

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my 4 children are having trouble keeping their toys picked up. i want to just get rid of them all but mabe 2 and just have that for them to play with. i don't know who i would be punishing though. them or me. i want to keep the toys that i had when i was a kid, but as i go through everything i keep thinking of when, how and where they got them. i am too sentimental about everything. i don't have the room, but what else would you get rid of through the house? we just had a yard sale, but we didn't even make a dent!

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Malinda - posted on 07/06/2009

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I know mine do! But WE don't buy toys. They just sort of appear (thanks grandparents).



Our method is one of rotation. We only leave out a few toys at a time and put everything else in storage, then every couple of weeks we rotate what is stored and what is available to play with. This keeps our children stimulated, but not *over* stimulated. I know you said you don't have much room, but perhaps you can donate some (or lots - just think about the children who aren't as fortunate and the appreciation they will have receiving them. I was very poor as a child and always appreciated the one or two new toys I recieved each year) and then start this with what you have left over.



GL!

Danielle - posted on 07/06/2009

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lol sounds like my place i started telling the kids what is left on the floor goes in the bin i only had to throw out a few toys till they got the message now they clean up their own toys lol

Christy - posted on 07/06/2009

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I'm with Olivia. Kids don't use their immaginations like we did when we were kids; they expect to be entertained at all times. And, for the most part, they don't like toys that don't make noise, light up, or do something. Like Olivia, we have suggested to our large family that gift certificates for the ice cream stand, McDonald's, Chuck E. Cheese, the book store, etc. would be more appropriate but it never works. Everyone always wants the kids to "have something to open". I fully understand that idea, but realisticly we don't have room for it all, they get so much that they don't even remember what they've gotten, and my kids would enjoy going out to dinner or ice skating or something just as much as a new toy. Sure, it fits in an envelope, but if you want them to open something, wrap it creatively in a box, sippie cup/thermos, little purse for a girl, wallet for a boy, etc. One year my daughter did get a gc for chuck e cheese and it was wrapped in a bunch of tissue paper and put in chuck e cheese lidded cup with a straw-they tied a ribbon around the cup and wa-la they had a gift, to open!

Nannette - posted on 07/08/2009

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i hear you!! i was in the same situation that you are in right now. It has come to a point that I could not control it and friends comes over and make a big mess in his room too. all i did was observe which toys are being used all the time and which are just laying around. i purchased bins for toys that he always play with and bins for toys that need to be disposed of, you could also add another bin for the toys that you wanted to keep. the keep bin put it in the storage, the play bin keep it in their room, and the dispose bin as what you did a yard sale, your best way to get rid of is donate it to a local thrift store. make sure they are responsible for their own bins and have to put away by the end of the day. have them help you sort, buy those colored dot circles and assign a color for each child so that they know it is theirs. goodluck!

[deleted account]

Books & general care of toys this depends a lot on the individual child. I have one who can walk on toys and says he doesn't see them (no visions problems). One who will take good care of her toys & books. One who is just as happy with a stick and his imagination and only a few toys and one who claims she never has enough.



We recently lost everything to a housefire on Halloween. My kids found they were happy with just a few things. Of course we have had people give us probably 10 big garbage bags worth of toys & i will sometimes trash pick nice toys. Many of those come into the house, get checked for damage & to see if someone really loves it. Damaged either gets fixed or trashed, Loved may be kept depending on quanity. The rest are often freecycled or donated to local preschools/day cares. They really prefer, as do we, non battery operated/noise making toys. Occasionally, I will garage sale these toys for really cheap. We are in a space now that does not allow for rotation of toys but with a frequent influx from other sources, we can change what we keep.



If you are one that is sentimental, think about taking pics of your child playing with the toy, & scrapbook the pic. Think about what your parents have given you from your childhood & how little of it you personally have any real emotional ties to. 2 good websites to help you with getting rid of clutter, be it toys or other stuff & getting your kids to help are flylady.net & housefairy.org

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Rachel - posted on 07/11/2009

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give a lot of the toys to Salvation Army or another organization where they can benefit others. If the child has not played ith it in the last 2 monthes chances are they have forgot about it or is not interested in it any more. Don't worry about sentimental attachement it is more for our attachement then theirs most of the time.

[deleted account]

I think it's a great idea to take the kids to a shelter or orphanage with some of the toys they are willing to give away so that they can see who is getting the toys and this will probably make them want to give more toys away. I also think that you could have a house rule that for every new toy that it brought into the house they have to choose one toy to give away to charity. That way the number of toys stays about the same. With a little bit of research you may be able to find another family with children around the same ages as yours who are not able to buy so many toys and who would really appreciate having your kids come over and bring them some new toys every so often. Also, as far as getting present from people my aunt did the coolest thing with us one Christmas that I will never forget. She found a family with 4 kids who were all much younger than us and we all went to the store together to buy them toys. We were each assigned a child and my aunt had a price range and we had the best time picking out a toy for each of them to play with. When we had picked out a toy we all went over to their house and got to meet them and see how happy they were to get the new toys. Maybe this is something you could encourage one of your family members to do or else do this yourself with the kids.

Sherry - posted on 07/10/2009

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I have a 7 mo old and have been given a lot of toys for 3 years +, At the moment I have them on a shelf in her room, but hate to think how many she will have be the time she is 3. I do not want her to have too many toys, but think she already has more than I had as a kid.

Jenny - posted on 07/08/2009

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I have a 12 yo step son who had a toy issue. We donated them to genuine less fortunate people so not matter how sentimental a good think was done. I now have a 5 mth old bub of my own and mentioned to mother-in-law that until he is old enough to understand unwrapping presents that I would prefer people to put into his bank account and she frowned on that. Obviously she is going to pay for us to build an addition to the house to keep all the toys he will get. BE TOUGH.

Amie - posted on 07/07/2009

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I am a foster parent and as such people are always giving me their "hand me down" toys. However my kids get plenty on their birthdays, christmas etc. My house is also overflowing with toys. I get anoyed when people come over and say things like "gee don't they have a lot of toys" because I feel like I have done the wrong thing and are spoiling them, even though I didn't give most of it to them. I am sure it would be worse if they grew up saying, we didn't have toys when we were kids. I have one little girl in my care who doesn't know how to play, she has made me realise the importance of toys, I am always on the look out for something which will really capture her attention and she might play with.

[deleted account]

Quoting Denise:

Where's all the old fashioned going out to play gone!!! maybe we buy too many toys to compensate for the that , because our children are in danger these days if they did go out to play...isn't it a shame society has changed sooooo much



I had this discussion w/ my mom and gma, theconclusion we came to - same world but now we have the 5, 6, and 10 o'clock news giving us the bad highlights :p same stuff has been happening forever



 



I got my not quite 3 year old to help me picj out toys a week ago for charity. I explained to her there are kids w/ no toys and we have plenty and will be getting more for our birthday so we should share our older toys that we don't play with. Surprisingly it worked well. I didn't get rid of as much as I would have liked but at least we were both happy to see the toys go away!

[deleted account]

I think my son has too many toys, his room is almost always a mess. If you do decide to get rid of some you can do a garage sale. Or save some somewhere else and when you see on the news that a family lost everything and the kids have no toys at all, you can send your unwanted toys to them granted your kids dont mind and understand it would help another child out.

[deleted account]

I try and go digging threw the toys before birthdays and Christmas and donate everything I can get away with. I find 4 boys get to much. Also if you have your kids help and explain to them that they are giving toys to kids that do not have any, it teachs them to be grateful for what they do have. Also we have talked about people bringing non parichable food items and then going to the food bank. We also have started getting nice things for gifts instead of toys. For example: nice well made towels and face cloths with their names embroiderd on them, good quality pillows, nice coats etc. This is something they still enjoy. Those towels are so soft that my baby likes to cuddle in them.

Natasia - posted on 07/07/2009

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i would keep more than 2 toy but i defanitly maybe get rid of some. i baby sit a 1 yr old to make extra money to prepare for my december baby so i dont really have any toys yet. This little girls momma sends about 2-3 a day with her and she is just fine for the 13 hours i have her

Ellen - posted on 07/07/2009

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I found that boxing up some for storage helped tremendously with the clutter. Then when the box was opened, they were very excited to see their old, "new" toys. You can easily sort them by season and/or age for storage when they wouldn't necessarily be playing with them anyway. I have even made a sweep of Christmas toys a couple of weeks after Christmas leaving only one or two new toys out, then breaking out a different new toy every week or so. That way they seemed to enjoy each new toy separately instead of being overwhelmed ina sea of new stuff. If there's too much they won't play, but just scatter toys around.

Sophrona - posted on 07/06/2009

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thank you Mrs. Sutton I do agree with you. when i was a kid, if you gave me a stick and some water, i would go outside and make a tiny town in the mud i just made in the driveway. it would take me all day to come inside. the sad part is we live on a very busy street, we rent, and there is no fence in the yard. also we live in a two bedroom single wide. it gets cramped.

Michelle - posted on 07/06/2009

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Quoting Mel:

i believe 2 toys in the living room, 3 outside like a slide a bike n a ball, 3 in the bedroom, 3 in the bath, 2 in the cot or on bed, 1 on the pram and 1 on the car seat is enough to rotate around each week or so.
firm believer that no toys belong in the kitchen at all!!!
and you should have board games high up or in a locked closet as small pieces always go missing.
the bin idea works for about a year but then after xmas it falls apart for abit.
if your child is young then instead of buying them all new toys for xmas take some toys away a few months before clean them up n re wrap them.
have boxes or storage for a toy like 1 for balls 1 for cars 1 for teddies ect
books should always be kept away from children and they should be read to.
my sister is learning this the hard way her children dont take care of books and leave them strewn across the floor or rip pages out. books should not be thought of as toys but as entertainment like dvds and kept away from children.


always keep a stack of toys at grandparents or friends houses you visit often!
so when you ask for voutures for there birthdays or xmas n you get toys instead tell the child that it will stay round there house and you can play when u visit!!!
this will soon teach people that dont respect your wishes

hope it helped


My daughter doesn't have many toys as she is only 6 months old, but I just wanted to comment on the book thing.  I believe that children should be exposed to books and should be able to read and look at them whenever they want.  Children don't take care of books when they are not taught to look after them.  You can't just give them books and not teach them the proper way to care for them.  That would be like saying not to let a child attempt to feed themselves because they may throw it on the floor.  How else are they going to learn.  Books teach language and promote reading skills.  Never take that away from a child.  I agree that maybe special books should be kept up high, but even my daughter at 6 months gets to look at her books by herself.  Sure she'll chew on them and such but we just give her rubber ones and fabric ones for right now.  I take them out of her mouth and say no thank you when she starts to chew.  Sure it will take awhile but she will get it eventually.



As for the toys I agree with one of the other mom's who said that she rotates them.  I work in a daycare centre and we rotate the toys every other week.  When we bring the toys out the next time they fall in love with them all over again!  Or in some cases think we got new toys.  We just place them in tote bins and keep them in our shed and then bring them out when we need them.



Good luck!

Denise - posted on 07/06/2009

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Where's all the old fashioned going out to play gone!!! maybe we buy too many toys to compensate for the that , because our children are in danger these days if they did go out to play...isn't it a shame society has changed sooooo much

Mel - posted on 07/06/2009

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i believe 2 toys in the living room, 3 outside like a slide a bike n a ball, 3 in the bedroom, 3 in the bath, 2 in the cot or on bed, 1 on the pram and 1 on the car seat is enough to rotate around each week or so.

firm believer that no toys belong in the kitchen at all!!!

and you should have board games high up or in a locked closet as small pieces always go missing.

the bin idea works for about a year but then after xmas it falls apart for abit.

if your child is young then instead of buying them all new toys for xmas take some toys away a few months before clean them up n re wrap them.

have boxes or storage for a toy like 1 for balls 1 for cars 1 for teddies ect

books should always be kept away from children and they should be read to.

my sister is learning this the hard way her children dont take care of books and leave them strewn across the floor or rip pages out. books should not be thought of as toys but as entertainment like dvds and kept away from children.





always keep a stack of toys at grandparents or friends houses you visit often!

so when you ask for voutures for there birthdays or xmas n you get toys instead tell the child that it will stay round there house and you can play when u visit!!!

this will soon teach people that dont respect your wishes



hope it helped

MARIA - posted on 07/06/2009

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Most of the toy's my kids had they didn't even play with but still didn't want to give them up either. So i took them for a visit to an orfanage in our area and after being there they decided to donate the majority of their toys and felt really good about it too. Maybe if your looking to get rid of some try doing that.

Olivia - posted on 07/05/2009

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I definitely think children have way too many toys nowadays! I have the same problem with my three kids and also keep them because of sentimental reasons, etc. I have gone as far as to ask family/friends to not buy toys but maybe a pass to the pool, or to a neat attraction, but always end up with toys or money for toys=P Now I look for local playgyms or daycares that may accept gently used toys as a donation.

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