De-cluttering kids’ toys: A surprising brain-boost?
De-cluttering children’s playrooms boosts creativity and cognitive development.
That’s according to a study by researchers at The University of Toledo. It seems that too much choice leaves kids feeling overwhelmed while limiting the options results in more creative play sessions.
“This increased involvement with a toy has positive implications for many facets of development, including imaginative and pretend play, self-expression, physical skills such as fine motor coordination, and problem-solving.” writes psychologist Susan Newman for Psychology Today.
And findings from our own research echo the Toledo study. “The more dolls a child has the less she cares about each one,” we were told by a Lottie-doll-loving dad.
There’s a sustainability angle to this, too. Toys that are essentially one-trick-ponies may have an obvious and immediate appeal but toys that spark imaginative types of play are likely to have more longevity.
When we’re designing kids’ toys, at Lottie Dolls, we are deliberately not prescriptive about the rules of play. We want our toys to inspire hours of creative play. When we made Lottie’s first dollhouse, for example, we created a tree-house with a swing, a slide and a secret trap-door!
So, #SpringClean19 runs until the end of April. The campaign is a brilliant incentive to clear out that play-room (and make space for lots of lovely, imagination-sparking Lottie Dolls!). But how? Isla, our Creative Director and a mum, shares her tips:
“I have a tendency to resist housework in all its dreary and repetitive relentlessness. In the past, I would let it pile up, tackling weeks’ worth in one miserable and dutiful blitz. Resenting – all the while - the hours of precious time spent on domestic mundanity.
Now? Each day, I enlist my daughters’ help, write a list of rooms then divvy them up, pop on a playlist and work towards our team goal of – at great speed – leaving each room more pleasant than we found it. Bins emptied. Beds made. Dishwasher emptied. Laundered clothes folded and put away. I thought long and hard about paying my kids for pulling their weight in the family home but pay them I do.
My thinking? It’s never too early for women to get comfortable with putting a value on their time, their efforts, themselves. Our house may not be Mrs Hinch or Marie Kondo worthy but – after a bit of combined elbow-grease – it’s definitely a happier and more harmonious home!”