04 January 2012

Create a "toy zone" with painter's tape

Create a "toy zone" with painter's tape

Darienne's husband deserves a big, fat kiss from every parent whose children likes to play with small toys:

Some kids like sorting and organizing Legos -- mine don't. They spread Legos all over the kitchen floor while they play which is wonderful...until it's time to clean up or actually use the room as a kitchen. 

So my husband created a Toy Zone, marked off with blue painter tape. The kids are free to leave their Lego projects on the floor provided they stay within the boundaries. That leaves the paths through the kitchen and food prep areas free and clear. It's working beautifully!

SMOOCH! (Professionally, of course.) (And an extra one for Darienne who shared the hack with us.)

More: Hacks involving Legos (organizing them, cleaning them up, building stuff with them...)

And: Hacks involving painter's tape

Your comments

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I do the same thing in the kids' bedrooms so that we always have a path in case of fire or going to the restroom in the middle of the night.

When I was a kid, my sister's big attic room was also the playroom. My parents laid down a big area rug to delineate the play area, and the rule was that all the toys (in our case, Barbies and their millions of accessories) needed to stay on the rug. Love the tape idea where a rug isn't practical!

Just be careful with tape, even painter's tape. We used painter's tape on our somewhat worn hardwood floors to create really cool "roads" and "streets" for them to drive their cars around, and then the tape took a bunch of the finish with it when we peeled it off.

Love this idea! I don't think my 16 month old would understand quite yet, but I'm going to Pin it so I don't forget. Thanks!

Brilliant, Melissa! A commenter on the PH Facebook page said the same thing (a rug as a toy zone boundary) and I was coming over here to share the idea! (Was it you who posted on Facebook?)


Oh, Sarah, that is brilliant. That's becoming its own hack. Stay tuned.

We use this idea during the summer barbecue season. We draw a "safety zone" line with sidewalk chalk to keep kids away from the hot grill and food cooking area.

we use a bath mat. got the idea from my kid's montessori day care, they use "work rugs" there.

I think this is a fabulous idea. I also think this would never work with my children. Even the tape itself would be pulled up in some fantasy game or to make a craft.

Katie: Heh. I have a boundary-pushing/trampling kid myself, so I get it.


My parents did tape boundaries for my brother and I when we were little for a different reason: we shared a room and we each needed our own play space sometimes. Each having an individual play zone (mine was by my bed, my brother's by his), as well as a neutral/cooperative play zone in the middle of our room, helped us keep our squabbling to a minimum AND taught us how to communicate about and respect boundaries. When we were feeling chummy, we would often invite the other sibling into "our" zone for playtime, but if we started to bicker, the "owner" of that zone would tell the other sibling to leave. It averted many a "MOOOM! He's playing with my toysss!" moment.

When looking for outdoor playground equipment for your children to enjoy, whether you are looking to purchase or just looking for local parks and play areas to use, one of the most important considerations is safety.

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