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With the anticipation of a new addition to our family, we knew the season of a playroom in our life was not over…and would not be for quite some time.  So, we set out to create a space our kids would love to play, create, and read in.  Being a teacher, I really wanted to create a place with an emphasis on words and books.  My son is at the beginning stages of reading so I wanted to provide him with lots of opportunities to interact with words.  This has been, by far, my favorite project in our house because I am a CBA (Children’s Book Addict)-ha!.  {stay tuned for more details…there was just too much to share in one post}

Organizing and Creating a Playroom www.amodernteacher.com

 

Organizing and Creating a Playroom www.amodernteacher.com

 

organizing and creating a playroom www.amodernteacher.com

Tip One: Think about your children.  My son’s favorite color is red.  So, what color did I incorporate?-yup-red.  My daughter’s favorite color is blue (mine too!) so I went with a red and aqua color scheme.  {which happens to be pretty popular this year so I lucked out}

Tip Two: Think how your children will be using the space.  When creating the book nook, we kept the books low and easy accessible.  The small board books I kept even lower so the youngest could reach them.  Do you have tall books?  Keep those books in a bucket on the floor.  We choose a beverage tin tub to keep those larger books.

organizing and creating a playroom www.amodernteacher.com

Tip Three:  Label, label, label.  BUT here is the teacher in me coming out–not only label with pictures but also with words.  And include real pictures of their stuff.  {just helps them make more connections}  When cleaning up, I try to make it a game by saying…”find the cubby that starts with a ‘c’…find all your ___ (cars) and place them in that cubby.  Ready…go”  Sometimes it works and sometimes…let’s face it…it is like pulling teeth to clean up.

organizing and creating a playroom www.amodernteacher.com

Tip Four: Create a place to put new words.  I created this word board where I highlight a different word each month.  The kids draw pictures that remind them or connect them to this word.

Tip Five: Create a reading nook.  I wanted a place that was magical to sit in and read.  These DIY tents seem to be all the rage on pinterest so my hubby and I put our own spin on it and created this: (a DIY post on how to create this reading nook is coming)

organizing and creating a playroom www.amodernteacher.com

Tip Six: While on pinterest, I found so many playrooms didn’t look real.  Like real families live there. There were maybe 2 buckets for toys…I say embrace what’s real!  And the reality is we have toys…more than 2 buckets. I like to switch out the toys on a rotating basis so it in’t too overwhelming but we do have quite a bit of toys out. When organizing these, create a rotating system.  Because of the room I have, I only have two rotations…but you might want to do more.  Of course, create those three piles–keep, donate, and trash and start sorting through your stuff.

Tip Seven: Incorporate an alphabet wall.  Doesn’t have to be fancy.  As you can see mine is super simple.

Tip Eight: Create a space to highlight work.  We used a row of clipboards to display work.  I like to put a word or two to the picture they make (a label–sometimes with a sticky note, sometimes just added)–just gives them another opportunity to become more familiar with words.

Tip Nine: Put it all on paper first.  This helped with sorting out the toys…what categories did I need….and that told me how many cubbies I needed to buy.  It also helped with budgeting {’cause it can add up fast girls!}  Of course, it also helped with the design of the entire room.

Aaaaaand there you have it!  Some tips on creating a ready-to-read playroom. I still am adding a few things to this room–we need a succulent plant (or two), more pictures on the map, and we decided to start a collection of globes.  Whew!  Over the next couple of weeks I will be sharing some more tidbits about this room {there is just too much for one post!!!} as well as the DIY Projects of creating the TV Screen, PLAY Sign, and the reading nook.  Can’t wait to share!!

 

Organizing and Creating a Playroom www.amodernteacher.com

organizing and creating a playroom www.amodernteacher.com

 

organizing and creating a playroom www.amodernteacher.com

So, do you have a playroom tip to encourage reading?  What do you think of this playroom?  Did you get any ideas?  I’d love to hear in the comments below.  Feel free to share on pinterest or facebook!

~April

Sources:

from left to right—

*curtains: (DIY) top part from Target, bottom part is burlap

*pillows: Hobby Lobby

*banner/bunting and labels: Schoolgirl Style 

*globe (nightlight): Land of Nod

*white boxes: Ikea

*red cubbies: Target

*aqua milk crates: Target

*red and white striped carpet: Ikea

*arrow: Hobby Lobby

*chalkboard easel: Ikea

*red cabinet: Ikea

*small table: Woodcraft from Amazon

*United States Map from Caravan Shoppe

*kid chairs: Pottery Barn