When you're small and you learn through play, life is your classroom. Even though you don't need a fancy set up, I do think it's important for toys to be organized for even small children. They know what they can use, they have easy access to what they need, and they feel comfortable experimenting within space boundaries.
My nephew is approaching two years old and another is on the way. There's no better time to prepare for the next generation. My parents have a retirement house, and this summer was spent working on the perfect play space. I'm just trying to help them be the best grandparents they can!
Books: Low to the ground and visible. Easy to pull out AND easy to clean up. We simply screwed baskets straight into the wall.
The kitchen is converted from an old entertainment center. It has space up top for extra storage. We replaced & spray painted the refrigerator door.
Close up picture of the kitchen.
Sink: Bowl in a jigsawed hole.
Faucet: Donated from our plumber.
Tiles: Leftover from another project. Super glued around the edge.
Stove: Plexiglass spray painted black with round wooden discs painted black.
Window: Picture frame and curtain. (Going to add a photograph!)
Utensil Hooks: Key holder from Lowe's.
Pots and Pans: From Ikea.
The kitchen table and art area. This table and chairs did not match... but they do now that they are both painted blue!
Crayons are in baby food jars and in an old spice rack. We will probably eventually add some more art supplies, but that will be when older grandkids are using the space more often.
The kitchen space.
Buckets and baskets for manipulatives, blocks, people, cars, etc.
Small building materials and accessories.
The buckets are hanging on pot plant hooks. They can be removed and put on the table or floor.
Again, easy to access and easy to clean up. Organization does enhance play!
Trains to play with and wooden animals.
The space is basically finished! As always, spaces evolve and change over time, but we're excited about this one getting some use soon. Our seven year old cousin has already dutifully taught the 18 month old how to make eggs on the stove.
*You can also see a bed to the left... though its purpose is to double as a guest room, it is also great for a comfy reading area!