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Organizing Puzzles

Keeping your children’s puzzles organized can be a frustrating task. When half the puzzle pieces are missing, no one wants to play with them. Who here has a drawer filled with the missing pieces just waiting to find their homes?

Here’s a couple things I do to keep my puzzles organized.

  • Buy 1 or 2 gallon plastic zip bags. Place one board puzzle inside and zip the top. If you buy the 1 gallons, they may not zip closed, so just keep them stored upright. Then they’ll always have the right pieces together in the same bag.

  • Sometimes I’ll write the same number or letter on the back of each puzzle piece. I wrote a D for the Dalmatian puzzle. It’s easier to match if they get lost, knowing which piece goes to which puzzle.

Here’s what others are doing to keep puzzles organized.


  1. Word of caution: PLEASE be very careful using the plastic bags and saran wrap. Small children can place gallon bags over their head and suffocate. Concerned grandmother.

  2. I keep stray puzzle pieces for other craft projects. Great for ATC’s, or just making gift cards. They add that extra punch.

  3. This is how we store the puzzles too. It makes a world of difference to pout a mark or label on the back of each piece, that way if they do get seperated from the puzzle you can easily identify which bag to put them back in. Great blog!

  4. Thanks for the idea. Currently, I use the puzzle rack, but there are some puzzles that would work great in baggies. I also really like the toy mesh bags you listed as a possibility…something I’ll be definitely looking into.

  5. I agree, this tip works great! We’ve been keeping our puzzles this way for about 7 years. For puzzles in a box, I cut out the picture on the front of the box and put that in the bag with the puzzle pieces. That way, they can still have the cover to help them put the puzzle together.

  6. I have had this same problem and came up with a good solution (I think). I put all of the pieces to all the wood puzzles in one plastic box with a lid. It makes the whole puzzle game a bit more challenging too, which is great for toddlers. I wrote about it more here
    Of course, if you have a baby doing puzzles it is probably best to get the pieces out for them but the one box thing makes clean up a snap- the kids can do it successfully and they really enjoy the added challenge of figuring out which piece goes to which puzzle.

  7. Hi Marie!
    Great organizing ideas! I had some of my puzzles in my 1st grade classroom organized in baggies. Now in 3rd I just mark the backs like you did. I bought one of those M & D puzzle organizers for home and I opted for the metal rack. **Bad idea! The M&D wooden puzzles are thick and not all of them fit into the rack. I’d opt for the wooden one since it seems the slots are bigger. (This is the one you posted!)

  8. What a great idea!! Now I know what to do so I don’t find puzzle pieces all over the house or in the wrong box!!

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