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K-5th Grade
5th-7th Grade
Dear Marianne:

What is the best way to store toys outdoors?
Ken, Newport Beach, CA, Father of Josh (6), Eric (4) and Trinity (2)


Q&A Corner

Dear Marianne:

We have tons of toys in our house. How can I organize them so my kids get the most play value from them?

Erin, Pittsburgh, Mom of Katie (9), Lizzie (8) Mary (6) Ben and Jacob (4)


Dolls and plush: Keeping these in their own dedicated bin that is easily accessible will allow a child find them more easily. Be sure to wash these often but check the labels first. Do not keep in a child's crib for safety reasons.

Small Parts: Construction sets, board games, action figures and playsets may come with small parts that can get lost, misplaced, stepped on or swallowed. It is best to group these and keep them in see-thru ziploc-type bags in one labeled bin.

Sports Toys: Outdoor sports toys should be kept in a garage, shed, basement, duffle or toybox. These get dirty and should not be kept with clean indoor playthings. For ride-on toys and other battery-operated toys, keep battery packs inside during cold weather or they will not work.

Educational-type toys: Make these the most accessible toys for after-school time. These can be homework helpers, encourage self-discovery or a child to show off what they know.

Tech gadgets: MP3 players require uploads of music, video game systems and computers require software. Be sure to monitor what your child chooses and make sure it agrees with your parenting style. Keep them in one area of the house so that you may access the content anytime.

How To...

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