Think of a time you have to solve a problem, and how good it felt when you finally nailed it!
That’s the feeling kids, and adults feel after placing the last piece of the puzzle. While you will be more composes, kids will scream in excitement and rush to you what they accomplished.
The truth is, every little child loves solving mysteries and discovering new things. When wooden puzzles come into play, they get the opportunity to explore, learn, and have fun all at once.
But how do you choose a puzzle for your child? What do you look out for? Which type is best for them, and why? Will the puzzle be valuable to your munchkin? This guide to wooden puzzles answers these and more.
What are the wooden puzzles?
Back in the 70s, maps were a big deal. Think Google maps, but on paper. Kids, however, take time to master such complex things, so mapmakers came up with an ingenious idea to help kid’s master maps: Wooden puzzles!
The mapmakers drew maps onto wood, then cut them into small pieces and used them for education to teach children geography. Since putting back the wooden pieces into their correct position relied on memory and logical thinking, it becomes a popular approach of teaching kids up to date.
Currently, puzzles are used at home, school, and kindergarten because they are fun and aid in kid’s development. Every home you visit, you are likely to find a little boy or girl playing with puzzles because of the value they offer.
Why wooden puzzles are good for your toddler
When kid start playing with puzzles, their little chubby hands struggle to put the pieces together, but in a few short months, some wooden puzzles become a piece of cake. Why you ask? Your kid’s brain has changed. Besides cognitive development, here are a few reasons why you should encourage your kid to play with puzzles.
Advantages of wooden puzzles
- Hand-Eye Coordination – Flipping, turning, removing, and fixing pieces of puzzles helps kids in learning the connection between their hands and eyes.
- Problem-solving – As children look at various pieces and figure out where they fit or don’t fit, they develop this vital skill.
- Creativity and imagination – Trying new ways of solving the wooden puzzle and combining colors to come up with something new, develop kids’ creativity skills and imagination.
- Fine motor skills – Lifting and handling wood toys build kid’s strength hence helping them develop motor ability.
- Cognitive development – Wooden puzzles for toddlers keep their minds active, working, and developing.
When should kids start playing with puzzles?
Once babies reach six months of age when they can sit up on their own, they can be introduced to puzzle wooden toys. At this stage, they enjoy transferring puzzles pieces from one hand to the other and mouthing them like crackers. Kids will, however, get the most out of the puzzles once they are 18 months of age, where they can comfortably solve insert puzzles.
Three-year-olds can comfortably solve a 20-piece puzzle while four and five-year-olds can solve block puzzles of up to 50-pieces. Ensure the pieces are not small enough to eat as they can choke the child. Ages six to seven can solve puzzles of up to 120-pieces while eight and nine-year-olds can solve 250-piece to 500-piece puzzles. When your little one is ten, they should be able to solve any puzzles with patience and guidance.
How to choose wooden puzzles for your kids
Different puzzles are suitable for different kids. So, here’s the guide on how to choose the right wooden puzzle for your children.
Children puzzles made from wood are mostly preferred because they are durable, eco-friendly, and free from toxic, making the puzzles 100% safe to play with kids.
2. Age of your kid
Your child’s age will highly determine the kid’s puzzles you choose. For instance, if they are between 12 months and four years, puzzles with smaller pieces may not be the best because they can be a choking hazard. If they are older, however, puzzles with large pieces will be too easy to trigger any real developmental value. AMouseWithAHouse has puzzles available for kids between 12 months and seven years.
3. Number of pieces
Puzzles come a few to multiple pieces. For toddlers, you can start with fewer parts and gradually increase the amount as they grow. For instance, this puzzle from AMouseWithAHouse is best for toddlers.
4. Size of pieces
Smaller puzzle pieces can have a choking effect when kids try to swallow them. The younger the child, the bigger the pieces you should choose. Older kids will, however, thrive on tons of pieces. Remember to check if they are age-appropriate, so your child doesn’t become frustrated and quite.
The theme of the woodblock puzzle will influence whether your kid enjoys playing with the puzzle or not. Young kids will be more interested in puzzles with bright colors, cartoons, and other appealing themes such as animals and insects.
Types of wooden puzzles for toddlers and children by age
There are many kinds of puzzles for toddler development in the market. However, Kids wooden puzzles boil down to two main categories – Inset and jigsaw puzzles.
1. Wooden Insert Puzzles: 6-36 months
Inset puzzles are the best choice for babies and toddlers. This suitability is because they do not interlock in the way jigsaw puzzles do; thus, making it easy for small kids to play without getting frustrated. An inset puzzle consists of a trey or a frame with cutouts of the pieces. They also contain knobs and pegs, allowing a young child to hold and maneuver them easily. Once your little one is bored playing with simple inset puzzles, you can move to more complex puzzles.
2. Wooden Jigsaw puzzles: 36 months and up
Jigsaws puzzles are ideal for children beyond the toddlers’ age. The problem includes complex interlocking pieces that are available in a variety of sizes and challenging levels. They are available as frames, floors, and 3D wooden puzzles. Due to this complexity, toddlers will find it frustrating to play with wooden jigsaw puzzles.
Every parent wants the best for their child, and with this information, you can comfortably choose a puzzle that’s suitable for your little one. For the best wooden puzzles, contact AMouseWithAHouse through 0424833164 or email us firstname.lastname@example.org.