Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Quiet Time Boxes

So for a couple of months now I have been using quiet time boxes. 
They are the best!
I am the type of mom that NEEDS down time!
While baby H. is taking his nap,
I send Miss Sweety pie down to her room to play with her quiet time box.

I started out with Lego's, K'nex, and stuffed animals.
But it wasn't up her alley {at all}.
I also made the mistake of giving her toys that were her favorites.
Then when it was playtime, or I was making dinner she had nothing to play with.

So I decided to make themed boxes with her forgotten toys.

Monday's theme: Aspiring Artist
It includes: A couple of Fancy Nancy books,
Dora water wonder paint note book
(uses water to paint, and then dries back white so it can be reused.)
wooden beads,
and some playschool people.

Tuesday's theme: Pinkalicious
It includes Pinkalicious and Purplealicious (the book),
Princess lacing cards,
and pretend hair styling kit.

Wednesday's theme: Dolls
It includes My "d" book (all about dolls)
paper dolls,
and baby doll with pretend bottle, food, clothes, diaper etc.

Thursday's Theme: Butterflies
It includes Fancy Nancy Bonjour Butterfly,
and other Fancy Nancy books,
wooden butterflies,
and some jewelery links.

Friday's theme: Princess
It includes My Froggy Valentine book,
Color Wonder book and crayons (too used for church, but not filled up.)
Princess Adventures static clean/dry erase book,
and play dough with Little Mermaid molds.
and a few other Disney Princess books.

Then I stored them under her bed,
with an alternate box,
so I can add things when I think of them,
or throw something extra in at the last minute.

P.S. If it's been a long day for her,
or she will be up late, I tell her she can play with her box and then she has to take a nap.

So here are some guidelines:
1. Use only the toys that your child doesn't play with everyday.
I just went around our house and through our bins of things she loves, but they are not her first choice.  For example, she never just picks up dolls, but she likes them. And at quiet time she is happy to have something new. So it was the forgotten toys around the house.
The key for M. was finding new exciting books.  Most of the books in her boxes are from the library, and I can rotate themes if I want. I usually put the books on hold and rotate through the books.

2. Don't use things that are consumable
Aka coloring books, stickers, markers or things that have to be thrown away when their all used up.

3. Don't use electronic things
Quiet time isn't very quiet with electronics.

4. Encourage your child to play with everything in the box.
Now I often include Lego's, and other things that are not on her top 10 toys.  I encourage her to play with them by telling her it's a rule to play with everything in the box.

5. Encourage your child to stay in their room until you get them.
This is the best rule!  But if this is too much of a stretch for your child, don't worry. Just work up slowly to your ultimate goal!
Here are some ideas for other things to put in a quiet time box:
1. Blocks
2. Magnetic Dolls
3. Measuring tape
(a small non dangerous one, it encourages M. to look at things in a new way.)
4. View Finders
5. Lite Bright
6. Plush Toys
7. Lincoln Logs
8. Tinker Toys
9. Doodler
10. Puzzles
11. Lego's
12.Kids K'Nex
13. Small Cars

Here are my other posts for Quiet Time Bags,
and a Quick Quiet Time Box idea.
Also check out The View From 5'5'' to find more ideas and how to's for Quiet Boxes.

Good Luck!
Happy Quiet Timing!!


  1. Just stopping by from Mingle with Us! I am the type of mom who needs some down time too! These quiet time boxes are great! I do something similar with my preschooler...only I call them her "choice baskets". I am also a teacher who's currently a SAHM...I miss teaching in a classroom, but I love being home raising my kids, plus there's just so much I can teach my little ones here at home!

    Just stopping by from Mingle with Us! These snowflakes came out great! I already have everything at home to make these with my preschooler! I love simple kid's crafts! I'm your newest follower on GFC!

    Criss-Cross Applesauce

    P.S. - I'm your newest follower on GFC!


  2. These are great ideas. I need to do this with my 4 and 6 year old.

    I'm stopping by from the mingle hop. I'm following by gfc, facebook and twitter.

    I'd love if you'd stop by my blog.


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  4. Oooh quiete time boxes, what a great idea. I just do a fortnightly rotate. Most of our toys are not quiete so quiete time is always reading in a quiete room for us :-)
    Visiting from the hop.

  5. Stopping by and following from the Mingle with Us blog hop. I LOVE the idea of quiet boxes. I could definitely use these with my 2 youngest.

    I'd love for you to visit my blog - Tales of a Pee Dee Mama

  6. Great idea! I've always used something similar for long road trips etc. but never thought about having some around the house! Thanks for sharing :)

  7. What a great idea! I can't imagine any kid not loving this... well the quiet part perhaps but quiet time must be had :-), but really, the special activity boxes are a great idea.

  8. That is brilliant. I struggle to get my daughter to happily have her quiet time. I am sure this will do the trick.

  9. Great idea ... perfect for giving you some me-time and helping your daughter gain independence and concentration. I featured your post at the Living Montessori Now Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/LivingMontessoriNow

  10. I wish I'd had this idea when my son was little! You have a lucky little girl! Thanks for the great post!

  11. What a great idea!!! I need to make some of these for Little Crafter asap! Now would be a good time; as we cycle in the new toys, I can put some of the old ones in a the boxes; he'll forget about them and be excited to see them again. This is going to be featured on One Artsy Mama this Friday; be sure to stop by!

  12. would love it if you could share this on my link party

    Natasha xx

  13. i love that these are literary based. i just started doing quiet reading time instead of sleeping at naptime with bear. these would be a good alternative so that he doesn't get bored with just the books!

    thanks so much for visiting the other day! i'm a new follower of yours!

  14. Fantastic ideas!!!

    Thanks for linking up to Serenity Saturday
    Hope to see you there again tomorrow

    Natasha xx

  15. This is an awesome idea! I too need "quiet time" and my 4 1/2 year old doesn't seem to want to nap as much lately. I allow him to "read" books in his room and play with all of his Cars cars and hot wheels, but this is awesome! I may have to brainstorm this one and put it into action asap! thanks for sharing!
    PS-Found your blog from WOTT at H is for Homeschooling

  16. thanks for the reference!

    April of Holistic Homemaking (formerly The View From 5'5")


Thanks for your great comments!