Start a toy library
Do you like children? Are you looking for a business idea that could bring economic benefits? Then you might consider opening a playroom or a toy library where you live. This guide will provide you with the necessary information, the procedures and bureaucracy, the funding envisaged to start from scratch to open a toy library.
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Playrooms and baby parking are a fun activity that allows you to keep in touch with children, to live in a profitable way. Of course, there are rules to be followed and the regulations to be followed.
Before you ask how to open a toy library, it must be clear what it is, because not everyone is clear about this and therefore they do not have the necessary elements to evaluate. The toy library is a meeting place for the youngest members of the family. It is a space used for games and recreational activities for children. For now it is becoming more and more common to entertain your children in these facilities, in the afternoons and during anniversaries. The toy library is aimed at children between 3 and 14 years of age, but inside it is possible to create special spaces for adolescents and adults.
How to open a toy library
First of all, it is said that to understand how to open a toy library we must start from the necessary space: you do not need a very big place, but one that is suitable for your use, and that is also preferably in a not too central area.
As far as the organisation of the space is concerned, the ideal is to make use of mobile structures (such as movable panels and partition walls) which can create and unpack environments, depending on the needs that arise from time to time.
It is recommended that the toy library be located on the ground floor, and be equipped with a space to be used for outdoor recreation.
Another essential aspect to be evaluated in order to understand how to open a toy library is to meet the professional requirements of the operators, for which no specific degree is required, although it is preferable that they have experience in the field of children.
If you have decided to try your luck with this challenge and are finding out how to open a toy library, you need to communicate your intention to your local Office of Industry and Commerce. You will be asked to attach a set of documents that will be sent with a letter, or by direct delivery to the same office.
What does a toy library look like?
We are going to see how to divide up the spaces in the environment that we want to assign to a toy library, which is one of the essential aspects of the steps to find a way to open a toy library.
Firstly, there must be a space for waiting and welcoming, that is to say, an environment that precedes the room where you play games and recreational activities. In the waiting room, there is some consulting activity for adults and parents.
It is also essential to provide a special area for the Secretariat, where actual office activities (such as child registration, loans, meeting programs with operators, game subscriptions, etc.) are played.
The play area is the heart of the playroom, so it should be larger than the other areas. In this room the games are carried out, they are entertainment activities (music, theatre, games).
There should also be a reading room, equipped with magazines and children’s books, also with manuals and comics. And why not? Even a computer area, where you can use your PC to create and print documents.
Requirements for starting a toy library
In the field of business for children, one of the most attractive and profitable niches is a toy library, where the education and entertainment segments today monopolize the interest and spaces, under new concepts like this, where they park, play, have fun and learn. However, there are some requirements that are important to take into account.
The concept of toy libraries always has an educational, formative and recreational role, they are also taken by parents as a support for the care of children for a limited time.
Toy libraries should be run by childcare technicians and people with knowledge of child development, because the format and rigour of the system inspire confidence in parents, beyond its design, furniture and concepts, which usually respond to strict safety and innocuousness controls for children.
Another important requirement is the furniture, which must be made of material with organic forms to avoid harming children. Toys must also be free of lead and other toxic substances. Colours should also be designed and combined to stimulate children’s senses. Offering high safety standards and having play as the main concept.
Advantages of having a toy library
This business, being the niche of education through play in children, has the advantage that the relationship with customers is given in a warm, friendly, professional and empathetic environment, as well as safe, reliable and pleasant to look at.
This business provides a social work in the sense that parents can leave their children in a place where they are safe and can have fun through toys and games, interacting with other children, and being supervised by trained child care personnel.
The relationship with parents takes place through forms, the personal, via telephone/e-mail and through social networks, so it is important to define the precise strategy of interaction from the beginning.
Another objective of this business is to enrich the consumer experience and positively impact trust, build and strengthen reputation, brand positioning and encourage repeat purchases. To this end, it ensures that the staff in charge of childcare offers impeccable treatment, both with children and towards parents.
Tips for starting a toy library
One of the tips to be successful with a toy library, is the attention to the clients to whom the project is directed, which are the children and the parents, who require a special serious, formal, kind, and loving treatment.
An important factor is that the investor likes the treatment and care of children and is fully involved with the business. The project is especially suitable for people with specific training in education and / or animation, animation and recreation of children, such as Technicians in Sociocultural Animation, Pedagogues, sociocultural animators, teachers, camp monitors, cultural promoters, among others.
The toy library must offer varied, recreational and interesting activities so that children are in a dynamic environment in which they can play in very different ways, favouring the development of the child’s personality through games and toys adapted to each age.
To facilitate integration and education with those children who have special educational needs. Some activities that should be included in a toy library are
Free play, through which the child has a variety of play materials, games and toys at his disposal, with which he can give free rein to his imagination.
The Workshops, with which children can do reading, crafts, theater, body expression, among others, developing with a weekly program.
Theater, with narrations and dramatic representations of stories and legends, through puppets, costumes, music, involving the children continuously.
Theme parties, which are celebrations accompanied by games, music, dance, where children can go in costume depending on the subject of the party.
The Birthday Celebration, which should not be missed because it involves preparation by the monitors offering games, surprises, snacks and gifts.
Problems that can occur in a toy library
The main problem with toy libraries is that they must meet a variety of requirements in concept and design because they are spaces for children’s development and interaction.
They must be attractive and fun spaces, with games and toys that promote children’s psychomotor, emotional, physical, affective, social and creative development.
Great care must be taken with the type of games and the values that are transmitted through their concepts and designs, especially because today the concepts of inclusion, ethnicity, religion, among others, have been brought to the learning spaces from a very early age and must be handled very carefully.
A successful business that is worth highlighting from this space is Cartoon Animaciones, which although it is not strictly a toy library, specializes in games, being an interdisciplinary group that thinks about recreation as a vehicle for meeting and development. Therefore, for more than 25 years they have been working as a team in relation to games, as a space of deep freedom where to develop, free imagination and creativity.
Another successful company in the game and ludopedia, is KidZania which is one of the brands of education and entertainment for children with greater growth in the world. It is an interactive city for children from 2 to 16 years old that mixes inspiration, fun and learning through role-playing activities. Children can freely explore a city on a scale of more than 7,000 square meters, where they can experience more than 100 exciting professions.