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Decluttering Ideas for Kids’ Rooms: 39 Things to Purge Now + a FREE Printable Checklist

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Who else gets totally annoyed and stressed out by a messy, cluttered play space?

Tell me I’m not alone. Because seeing toys everywhere seriously makes my blood pressure rise.

Well, today’s the day we’re going to tackle the craziness. Together.

Almost every time I walk into my kids’ playroom, it sorta looks like a Toys R Us recently exploded.

Yes, I know kids make messes. And kids playrooms are meant to be, well, played in. But seriously, why is it that there can’t be just five minutes when everything is in its proper place?! Gah.

Here’s a photo of our playroom right after doing some cleaning…and toys are already back out again.

A look at our decluttered kids playroom right after cleaning and organizing, with a cubicle bookshelf for toy storage, storage bins, and a kid-sized table.

Here’s the thing: We do clean up and put toys away almost every evening. I do donate and throw things away periodically. I know you do, too.

But it’s like every time I turn my back, the toys all start multiplying. Cue that scene from one of the Toy Story movies when all the mean, weird toys come to life and take over the place.

So a few weeks ago, after seeing our entire 8×10 playroom rug completely covered in toys just one day after I had painstakingly organized everything, I decided it was time to tackle the clutter once and for all. I was going to win the battle against blocks and Barbies and basketballs and baby dolls. Since that day, I’ve committed to doing a sweep of our playroom once a month and throwing away or donating any items we’re no longer using.

To make the most of Operation: Declutter the Playroom — or Operation: Get Rid of All the Crap We Don’t Need That No One Ever Plays With — I made myself a handy list of all the things to look for as I scoured our playroom, large trash bag in hand.

Why did I make a list, you ask, instead of just running around the playroom tossing things in my bag as I please?

Well, just like any project, I often find that it’s helpful to have a guide to follow, plus I wanted to make sure I was as thorough as possible so that I wasn’t finding items in our playroom later on that should have been placed in the Goodwill pile.

So here we go!

39 Things in Your Playroom or Kids’ Rooms To Get Rid of Right Now (+ A FREE Printable Checklist!)

Check out my list of nearly 40 things to either throw away or donate right now that you can use as a guide as you kick off your cleaning spree. The list includes things like:

  • Broken crayons
  • Coloring books or sketch pads where 50% or more of the pages have already been used
  • Sticker sheets with 50% or more of the stickers are missing
  • Puzzles that are missing pieces
  • Decks of cards that are incomplete
  • Books that have ripped pages and covers
  • Stuffed animals that are stained or ripped (unless they’re your child’s absolute favorite)
  • Small, cheap plastic toys that your child brought home in a birthday party goody bag
  • Inexpensive, seasonal toys (e.g. a plastic, wind-up pumpkin toy)
  • Toys that are now too “young” for your children

I made you a FREE printable checklist so you can carry the list through your playroom and kids’ rooms as you’re searching for items to purge!

Here’s a sneak peek:

A free printable checklist of 39 things to purge from your kids playroom, organized neatly in lists.

I print a bunch of these at a time so that I have them handy when I get overwhelmed by the clutter in our playroom and feel like it’s time to purge some items.

All the items are broken down by category on the checklist, too, making your decluttering process that much more efficient.

Want your FREE printable checklist? Just fill out this form and I’ll send it right over to your inbox so that you can print it and get to your decluttering. So easy!

Get your FREE printable checklist now!

Don’t miss more decluttering tips and tricks:

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Thursday 23rd of April 2020

Where did you get the burlap baskets? They are so cute!


Thursday 23rd of April 2020

Thank you Lori! They're from Crate & Kids but they're a few years old. I think they still sell a style that's similar, though.

Janine Kilbride

Saturday 18th of April 2020

Can you share where the 25 cubby storage unit came from?


Saturday 18th of April 2020

Hi Janine! Yes, it's an IKEA Kallax shelving unit. We've loved ours!


Saturday 26th of January 2019

I just came accross this and whilst I agree it’s good & necessary to declutter as the kids toys can definitely get overwhelming, I’m a bit surprised that you are going round with bin bags. Why not wash the soiled toys? And donate the unused toys?. Why throw books only half used or half a crayon?? Kids don’t mind if 50% is used up & they can still use short crayons. That creates such a lot of waste, especially of plastic. I feel like this article may have been written somewhere where recycling is optional rather than a requirement.


Wednesday 30th of January 2019

Thanks for stopping by! This list is meant to be a jumping off point for decluttering a play space, but each person can and should make the ultimate decision on what stays and what goes, and what they wish to do with the items their children no longer use. By all means, if there's an opportunity to donate or recycle something, I'm all for it! Although in my house my kids are rough on things, and there are some items I'd be embarrassed to donate because they've been completely destroyed. ;-) But every parent knows what decluttering and purging approach is right for their family.


Friday 14th of April 2017

I have an 18 month old little girl. We pretty much have a "toy area" in every room of the house. We have a bonus room upstairs that is a playroom but we are only using when we are up there because obviously she is too young to be up there herself. So long story short, I am looking for ways to declutter the "toy areas" that we have in each room! Thanks for the advice and checklist, hopefully it will clean it up a little bit!

On a side note where did you get that puzzle holder. We are in desperate need of something like that!


Friday 14th of April 2017

Hi Lisa! Oh, I hear you -- we have toys pretty much everywhere. In our playroom, the basement, both my kids' rooms....they really do sort of take over the house! I hope the checklist helps! Would love to hear your feedback. Good luck with the decluttering, and have a wonderful weekend. :)

Bethany Crisp

Thursday 13th of April 2017

Ugh!! The struggle is REAL!!! Thanks for this post and the playroom motivation!!! I need to go through that checklist asap!!


Thursday 13th of April 2017

It's nice to know we're all in the same boat! Kids' spaces are so tough to keep organized....but gosh darn it, we're all going to try. :-)

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