June 22, 2019

Lily’s Play Rotation | Week 1

For a while now I’ve been wanting to really give toy rotation a try, not only to make sure Lily gets the most out of her toys but also because I was just bloody sick to death of picking a billion things up every 3 hours. When her toy boxes were rammed she would get everything out rather than getting a toy and playing with it, I felt like she wasn’t getting much out of most of her toys because it was just this cycle of getting everything out and not really playing with anything properly as her attention was just everywhere flitting from one thing to another because she was clearly overwhelmed by it all and so I was hoping that giving her a set number of toys would help this.

We are about a week into toy rotations so this week she has just had fewer toys that normal really to her but I’ve definitely noticed her attention is being grabbed more and her imagination is flourishing much faster than it was for sure! I’m not really sure how often i will switch things up as it’s a bit of a learning curve for us both so I’m going to go with the flow and switch things up as she loses interest I think. Any tips would be great!

Anyway, I thought I’d show you what toys she’s been playing with this week!

Wooden Toy Box + Hard Hat

role play
fine motor skills

I’ve popped these together because we got them from the charity shop at the same time and Lily sort of assigned them to each other. She is loving wearing the hard hat and going around the house with the tool box “fixing” all our doors and appliances.

Alphabet Bus

letter recognition

This is another second-hand purchase but this was from the Facebook marketplace and cost about £5 with all pieces intact! The idea is that they take the letters out of the bus and pop them into the slot and then the bus will play the phonic sound or music depending on which setting it’s on. I’m hoping this will help secure some more letter sounds and help with Lily’s letter recognition too although I’m not pushing this too much and letting her do her own thing with it. This is one that hasn’t really been played with at all yet, she likes to empty the letters out but that’s about it so far.


imaginative play
fine motor skills
small world play

Lily has a whole bunch of vehicles from wooden dinos to little metal hot wheels cars and she very rarely played with all of them so I’ve taken out a small selection in the hope that rotating will help get more out of her ever-growing collection, haha. She particularly loves the wooden fire engine which was a charity shop find. I feel like most of her toys are second hand, which is fine but it’s all I seem to be saying in this post, haha. Anyway, as I was saying, she loves this little wooden fire engine, she has really let her imagination go wild with it making fires out of Duplo and pretending trees are on fire and having a little Playmobil character drive the truck to put it out. She is loving the word “emergency” too which I think is thanks to this little engine!

a tree with a duplo “fire”

Wooden Shape Sorter

hand-eye coordination
shape recognition
problem solving
colour recognition
fine motor skills

I think shape sorters don’t get enough spotlight when it comes to toys, I feel like they’re seen as “baby” toys rather than toddler toys but they’re such great things to help your child development in a bunch of different areas. They can practice their hand-eye coordination whilst putting the shapes in each hole as well as fine motor skills picking the different shapes up, colour and shape recognition with a good helping of problem-solving whilst figuring out what goes where.

Play Food Set

fine motor skills
role play

I picked up this little set from Matalan after Lily practically begged me to let her buy it. It’s a pretty good little set with burgers they can build, sauces they can pretend to squirt as well as drinks and fries. She loves making burgers or cheese toasties for us all with this.


fine motor skills
sensory play

Lily absolutely loves Playdoh, so much so that we pretty much always have a pot in the house. I am trying to find a perfect recipe to make my own because I dread to think how much we have spent on it over the past couple of years. She has a whole bag of cutters and tools to use with it which are mostly ones that Eloise used to have remained in the top tier of toys with both kids for years. There is so much they can do with it from putting their fine motor skills to the test using various tools to imaginative play when they start making little characters and things.

Plastic Figures

small world play
imaginative play

Yet another charity shop find! We found a bunch of old 90s Playmobil figures for about £1 and Lily loves them. There is a load of different character for lots of play opportunities and we do get a lot of play out of these. Lily is particularly liking putting these guys in the cars or fire engine at the moment or just creating little conversations between them.

Granny Square Blankets

role play
imaginative play

These were originally part of a play tray I made, I crocheted them all for Lily’s 3rd birthday and popped them into the try along with a couple of different wooden animals and she uses them to “tuck them in”. I switched up her play trays this week but she didn’t want to part with this activity so I’ve put them all into a little net bag. The squares all have different colours and textures too which is a great sensory addition (although one or two pom poms may or may not have been pulled off, haha).


Along side these I have a set collection she always has access too:

crayons and paper | because she adores drawing, not a day goes by where we don’t have a stack of artwork from her.

play trays | these are always on a little shelf that she can reach herself at all times.

books | she has a whole shelf of books that I never limit, all at a level she can reach herself.

duplo | Lily has played with her giant tub of duplo every single day for years, so much so I genuinely think she would be lost without it, haha. It’s a huge xl tub with like over 200 pieces that cost me £2 from a charity shop. Win.

Do let me know if you’ve enjoyed this post, I’m debating whether or not to keep at them or to just document the rotations on my Instastories (or both!?), let me know!

1 comments so far.

One response to “Lily’s Play Rotation | Week 1”

  1. Amy Weston says:

    Think I’m going to start a toy rotation like this my kids have so many toys and they just end up all over their bedroom floor and not really played with. I have a blog post for a playdough recipe if you want to give it a go x

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