Toys can help children build brilliantly! Building blocks are great toys that teach kids.
My children received their first Lego Brick set when they were 3 years old. They were young but my kids were no longer in the habit of putting non-food objects in their mouths so I was comfortable giving them regular Lego Bricks. They sometimes had difficulty pulling the pieces apart but they enjoyed playing with them for hours. Once they were 4 they were able to play well with them without help. To my delight, Lego bricks are one of their favorite daddy and daughter activities.
This year I received K’nex, Tinker Toys, and Lincoln Logs while attending iRetreat 2014. Bricks 4 Kids presented us with these amazing toys and I have loved them ever since because they keep my children entertained and are a very good alternative to playing electronic games or watching TV.
Building blocks we enjoy using in our home:
Recommended age 4+
(For young children, I prefer building sets that don’t tell them what to make. Lego bricks has some sets with instructions and others without the pieces that will allow them to create solely from their imaginations)
I love the flexibility of their pieces. Kids can may moving objects that are fun to play with. This set is the most challenging for my kids. Using K’nex can help build fine motor skills because children will have to learn how to push and snap the pieces together to build new creations. I really like that the box we have included instructions to create several of models.
Lego Duplo Blocks
Recommended age 2+
If you have children who are younger and you aren’t comfortable with them using very small pieces the Lego Duplo Blocks are a better option. My kids received the Duplo cupcake set for they’re 4th birthday. They enjoy them, but the smaller pieces like, Lego Friends, are their favorites because it allows them to create more items.
Tinker Toys are Toys that Teach
My kids tell me that Tinker Toys are fun to play with because they snap together. They can give younger children with a great sense of accomplishment. Children can link the pieces together and build sculptures with them. They are fun to use in conjunction with other toys like mini action figures.
Lincoln Logs are Toys that Teach
My children feel accomplished when they build homes using Lincoln Logs. They usually sort and count the logs first and then find the pieces they need to create new homes, barns, fences, pens, etc. According to my girls they love playing with Lincoln Logs because they are stack-able.
Below are several lessons kids can learn while actively playing with building toys:
- Analytical thinking and Problem solving skills – Although these types of toys come with directions they take work to figure out and assemble the pieces together.
- Promotes imagination – If you could only build one object with these block sets children would lose interest very quickly. However these toys help kids learn how to follow instructions and also how to use their imaginations to build anything they want (even huge spaceships).
- Patience – building complex models can take time. Kids can learn the benefits of patience and perseverance. As a child I remember spending hours trying to figure out how to assemble my Lego bricks, once complete I felt so accomplished.
- How things work – some of the more complex kits (K’nex) and those from Lego Technic help teach kids learn how machines actually work.
Each of these toys are great for teaching your child creativity, teamwork, math concepts and how to follow directions. So next time you want to just let your child watch TV try letting them play with some building blocks instead.
American schools are making STEM a huge deal ...