Toy Organizer Solution for a Child Who Climbs on Things?

Updated on August 05, 2011
M.B. asks from Milwaukee, WI
11 answers

Hi helpful mamas! I was wondering if you may have any ideas for me. My 3-year-old's bedroom contains just her bed and her dresser (which has a Tot Lock on the lower 3 drawers so she can't pull them out to climb on them.) She used to have a changing table but one day a few months ago I walked into her room to see her standing on top of it (I didn't hear her climb on it and thought she was just playing on the floor.) I was so surprised I immediately removed the changing table from the room. She has lots of toys of many types and they're stored in buckets and boxes and bins on the floor. I feel that now she can learn to keep her toys better organized, and I would like to buy a storage system for her room to keep her toys neat, but I am worried that she will climb on it. Her bedroom is the one place I leave her alone (with the baby monitor) for naps and bedtime and it has to be completely safe. I saw a system made of two end parts and dowels between them, and colored bins rest on the dowels (Tot Tutors Toy Organizer) So if it doesn't have real "shelves" a child can't climb on it, right? I was wondering, what kind of toy organizer solutions have you come up with that kids don't care to climb on? I look forward to your ideas, many thanks! *peace*!

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answers from Rochester on

We have one of they shelves with bins. I love it because we can organize the toys--one bin for cars, one for animals, one for balls, etc. It makes it easier for my kids to find what they want and to put things away. We haven't had problems with them climbing it. Maybe that's because they aren't climbers or maybe it's because they can't get close enough to it to climb. We keep some of their larger toys in front of it. I think it would be a good idea to invest in some type of climbing toy and to teach her that you only climb on that.

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answers from San Francisco on

Are you near an IKEA? They sell a solid wood toy shelf with sliding plastic containers that is actually meant to be climbed on, it's a 3 level type thing. It's awesome! It even comes with a bracket so you can secure it to the wall.
Now that my kids are older we use it in the garage :)

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

No, they climb on the rails of those and they bend easily. Buy some regular bookshelves and use L brackets to attach them to the walls. Then use small L brackets to attach each shelf to the insides of the shelves. This is what child care centers do. It makes it safe for the little guys if they do climb on them. Her dresser is next. She will climb it like getting out of a pool, climbing up where there is no ladder.

If she wants to climb she will climb. Give her something to climb.

We bought our little guy a Kangaroo Climber from Step 2 through Sears. They ordered it online at the store and it was there a few days later. I was nearly $40 less than Toys R Us. They have all kinds of options now and each of them will fit in a small bedroom.

Our guys room is 11.5' X 12' and he had a twin bed, a 9 drawer chest of drawers, 3-4 bookshelves, and the climber was in a corner area. He climbed on it and slide for hours at a time. Be sure you get a big enough one since she is almost too old for a lot of the toddler ones.

They need to be challenged but still be safe so any that fit that in your lifestyle would be fine.

Here is a link to step 2 climbers. They do come in different sizes and for different ages, don't get one that is too easy for her.

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answers from Washington DC on

Please, please, whatever you choose, get to a Babies R Us or other similar store and go to the babyproofing section and get tethers that attach furniture to the walls. Just having a good piece of furniture you think she won't climb on isn't enough. The real problem will be when she climbs on something and it tips over. Kids have been killed by televisions and furniture falling onto them when they tried to climb it (or just tipped it). You need to anchor her bedroom dresser, all bookcases in the house, toy shelves, television tables and stands etc. to the wall behind them if you really want to improve safety. Yes, teach her not to climb, of course, but you can't ensure she will always do what you are teaching her -- she's too young to follow your warnings every time yet. Just because an organizer doesn'thave shelves, or you lock the bottom drawers of a dresser so she can't pull them out, that does not ensure she won't tug on them or try to climb anyway. And that could end up with the furniture tipping over onto her.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Bismarck on

A climber will find a way to climb on just about anything. I would look for a solution that is sturdy enough to take climbing and if they fall off they won't get hurt to badly. Some options: a toy box/chest, storage ottomans (cubes w/ storage but also soft for a seat), we have a toy organizer from target w/ fabric bins it is 2 bins high but less than 2 feet, ikea has a similar organizer that is a little longer and maybe sturdier.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

We used one of those bucket systems you are talking about for a few years. I have never seen any one (friends or my kids) try to climb on it at all. But we did have a learning curve with that system. For a while my son's favorite activity was to completely empty every bin. That was a LARGE mess to clean up. It took a while to break him of this habit. It was very frustrating to say the least. But once he stopped doing that, they were great for us for a very long time. Eventually I just wanted to mess to be tidier and more out of site and his collections were getting harder to squeeze in there. My children both went through a climbing phase. We had to remove bar stools and other furniture to keep them safe. During these phases we just had to watch them closely and teach them that climbing inside is NOT ok. My son's phase was pretty short lived. MY daughter? A lot longer. It made for very long frustrating days, but she did eventually stop.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I didn't read other responses, but what I did was... bought the canvas bins & lined them against a wall. Easy access & safe.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Utica on

What about an ottoman that opens to a storage space? I had one that was very squishy fabric onto to create another couple seats in the livingroom that opened to a very large amount of storage space
Good Luck

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Lincoln on

I have that organizer for my son and it's only about 3 feet high or maybe less. I think it'd be a good one to use b/c it's not sturdy enough to climb on. He's not a climber, but if he tried it would probably just tip over and I doubt that fall would hurt him. Good luck a climber has to be a challenging one!!! :-)

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answers from Austin on

As long as she is a climber, she will continue to figure out how to climb..

Soon, she should be understanding when you place her in time out for climbing n the furniture, she is not supposed to climb on anything except play ground equipment..

Teach her, "Feet stay on the floor" and "Furniture is not for climbing".. And yes, some kids adore climbing.. We gave our daughter a Tiny Tikes slide when she was only 1, because she was a monkey and loved to climb.. We could keep it in the house and remind her.. "We only climb the slide in the house."

Until then I would continue with plastic bins with no lids.. You do not want her to injure herself..

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answers from St. Louis on

that dowel rod system would make a good ladder for her! LOL!

yes, kids climb on whatever they can grab onto.....even if it means stacking toys on top of each other! I've seen kids stack toys onto a chair & then build from there.....

The easiest way to handle this is to teach your child ...your rules. To teach safety, cause & effect, & the importance of listening to mom/dad's rules. Peace.

1 mom found this helpful
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