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How to Make a Safe Playspace for Toddlers

Updated on August 14, 2012

Whether you have young children or grandchildren running around your house every day, or just the occasional pint-sized visitor, you know how important it is to have safe places for toddlers to play. I have two young children, and I know how it feels to worry and hover when a child is in a location that could contain hazards.

It is important to have a safe place for toddlers (and the adults supervising) to feel free to relax, play, learn, and have fun! Follow these tips to create a safe playspace.

Soft furniture can be fun!
Soft furniture can be fun! | Source
Soft toy storage is best!
Soft toy storage is best! | Source

Toys for Toddlers

When designing a safe playspace, consider the ages of the children who will be playing there. Remove any toys that are aimed for older children or that may contain choking hazards, such as small Lego's, puzzles, or anything else with small pieces. The children should be able to play freely with everything in the room.

Because toddlers are just learning to walk and may have balance issues, make sure the available toys are soft or have rounded edges. This will help ensure that any toddler who falls won't hurt themselves by falling on a sharp or pointed object.

Consider toy storage when you are planning your playspace. Choose options that are easy for toddlers to access, such as open-top toy boxes and bookshelves where they can easily access toys and can also easily put toys away.

Child sized furniture!
Child sized furniture! | Source

Play Room Furniture

What kind of furniture do you put in a toddler play room? First, think about what you don't want. Avoid any tables that have sharp corners, unless you cover them with corner pads. Also, stick with soft chairs or couches and no recliners that could pinch fingers.

There are many options for toddler-sized furniture to use in a play room. From table and chair sets to comfortable miniature sofas, almost everything comes in toddler-safe designs and sizes. But I don't recommend spending too much money on furniture because toddlers don't sit still! Consider soft carpeting and pillows on the floor for safe playtime. A toddler play room should be both safe and functional for their needs. With lots of room to move and not a lot of furniture, you will create a space that toddlers want to use.

Childproof the Room

In addition to the furniture and toys, follow some basic childproofing rules to prevent accidents and injuries.

  • Place outlet covers into all wall outlets, and make sure cords are out of the way to prevent tripping or children playing with cords.
  • Doorknob covers should be placed on all doors leading out of the room, and on any closets that are accessible. This is an easy and effective way to contain toddlers to a safe area.
  • Also, use baby gates to keep children out of other rooms. Gates are also important at the top and bottom of any stairs (even just a few steps). Gates keep children from falling up or down stairs.
  • Place cabinet latches on any exposed cabinets or drawers to prevent children from accessing items that could injure them.

You can enjoy the playspace too!
You can enjoy the playspace too! | Source

Just for fun! Chilproofing Tips from a 3-year-old!

Make a Fun Playspace

Once all the safety aspects are met, it's time to make the playspace fun! Consider the room from a child's perspective, and fill it with things that promote learning and free play. You will love spending time with little children in a safe and fun play room. When you aren't constantly worried about injuries, you can be free to play too!

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    • Amy Gillie profile imageAUTHOR

      Amy Gillie 

      5 years ago from Indiana

      Thanks TF! This is all from experience. My youngest is exiting the toddler years now.

    • TFScientist profile image

      Rhys Baker 

      5 years ago from Peterborough, UK

      Another one to bookmark. Great advice, although nothing I will be enacting for a few years! Will have to remember to come back here.

      Voted up and useful

    • Amy Gillie profile imageAUTHOR

      Amy Gillie 

      5 years ago from Indiana

      Nettlemere - sounds like you were quite a handful! I have two little ones, and have learned some of this the hard way too. Thanks for reading!

    • Nettlemere profile image

      Nettlemere 

      5 years ago from Burnley, Lancashire, UK

      My parents could have used your hub when I was a toddler! One of my early memories is a broken arm which I got swinging from a low wooden table which I think must have fallen on me. This is full of useful advice.

    • Amy Gillie profile imageAUTHOR

      Amy Gillie 

      5 years ago from Indiana

      Thanks for reading, Margie! I have two little ones, so I want others to learn quickly what I had to learn the hard way!

    • Mmargie1966 profile image

      Mmargie1966 

      5 years ago from Gainesville, GA

      What an excellent hub! Every new parent should read this. You laid out some terrific ideas for safety! Great Job!

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