We fortunately have a small mudroom off the garage door entryway. It wasn’t initially there on the plans well it was but it was much smaller and had a storage closet. We removed the closet and took the second larger pantry out of our kitchen and flipped it into the laundry room. This created a nice sized entry way. However up until now it’s been an empty space. Well not so empty it usually is a dumping ground for backpacks, coats, boots, hats and mittens. Initially I would take all of those things after school/work and hang up in the front hall closet and then each night before I went to back take them all back out again and lay them neatly in the mudroom in each persons pile so that we would be ready in the morning. You can probably understand why I stopped this routine.
Originally I wanted a cubby/locker that incorporated the corner but my husband Phil said unless I was willing to wait until the Summer when we had more time off I would have to simplify my design and he was hoping we could also incorporate some Ikea pieces. We found the Hemnes bridging shelves and instantly knew they were perfect. The size was right, the price was too. We could mount one up high for storage baskets to hold hats and mittens and one low with legs to act as a bench and a shoe/boot cubby. I wanted it to have a custom look as well so I asked Phil to add bead board and trim between the benches and of course we needed hooks to hang our coats. I was going to hang all coats at the same level but Phil suggested we put the kids hooks lower in the middle so they could hang their coats alone (way to encourage independence daddy!). Visually, I like the way the different heights look.
This was so easy and inexpensive and exactly what we needed to finish the space and make it functional. Now I just want to add some decorative touches to the top (suggestions please) and on the opposite wall I’m going to hang a cork board and some hanging file folders.
My children Keelyn and William were very lucky this Christmas and received many new toys. No duplicates and things that they both are genuinely interested in a lot of cross over things that they can enjoy together. We are appreciative towards our family and friends. It was quite a large pile of gifts though but that’s what happens when you have large families. I decided to deal with organizing and putting away the toys right away. It’s one of those tasks that the longer you leave it the more tedious the job seems to be. It also helps that I was consistently motivated by two little ones that kept requesting I “open it, open it!”
The kids have their own playroom space on the second floor just outside of Wililam’s room it is not a large space but we are very grateful for it. It’s painted a nice bright kid friendly green (not like the yellow you see in the photo). The organization is simple. Ikea shelves with bins, a small shelf which sections off the “house centre” as my kids say. And a low Ikea table that actually a TV stand but we use it as a building/puzzle table because the kids can sit on it, in front of it and there’s a shelf where we store puzzles under. Sometimes this table even acts as a stage! I organized the dress up clothes on the large shelf. My husband removed one of the “cubes” and then I used the 3M sticky hooks so that clothes could be hung. We also have a chest and bin of accessories.
Looking in the playroom. It is NOT this yellow!
I LOVE how the dress up clothes hang
Anyway the space is pretty simple and well organized so fitting in a pile of new things was going to be tricky. I also know from my Kindergarten teaching experience that the key to keeping kids engaged with toys is to swap them out every so often. And less is more! I’m sure you’ve had to manage the play space once every toy had been dumped not fun. I try to swap toys the first Saturday of the month but that hasn’t been happening lately so I needed a system. I went to the dollar store and purchased a ton of bins and baskets all toys were then opened up and placed inside a basket or a bin with a lid. Some bins went on playroom shelves, some on a shelf we have downstairs in our family room and the rest inside the playroom closet (yes our playroom has a closet it’s amazing). This way when it’s toy swapping day it’s literally a matter of pulling out new bins and rotating between the two spaces. It also makes tidy up really easy especially since Keelyn and William are use to Kindergarten and Daycare toys being organized in this manner. My next step is to make labels for each bin which will make tidy up time really easy!
The closet games on the top so William can’t reach them down 🙂
Just for fun our playroom rules! Wall Decal ordered from ETSY from seller LucyLews
I love Pinterest. “Pin it” has become a bit of an obsession for me but I can’t help it the A-Type girl I am just LOVES how things are organized into neat little digital file boxes. So of my friends and I kid how well dressed our homes, kids and selves our in our alternate pinterest reality but truthfully I’ve found and followed through many good ideas thanks to that site.
This summer I decided to set up a pinterest for school account. It’s a great way for me to organize and share ideas that I want to implement in my classroom with colleagues and parents. Not that I’d be embarrassed for people to see my personal I just kind of felt like maybe they don’t want to know what we are having for dinner or what paint colour my laundry room is (or maybe they do?)
It occurred to me that Pinterest would be a great tool for students to use to organize photos and information for assignments and projects. For younger students you could even have a class pinterest where each student had a board and they could pin things to their board. That’s a good idea I think I’m going to set that up.
How do you use pinterest in your classroom?
Oh yeah, follow me! Ms LY