Puzzles for kids are a popular play activity that both kids and adults like equally.
I am sure you remember the first time you solved a Rubik’s cube or the frustrations of not solving it.
Mind you some of us haven’t managed to solve the hallowed cube at all. ☺
Puzzles are a fun activity to do alone or in a group and children thoroughly enjoy it.
Various puzzles for kids options are available for different age groups. Along with being a fun activity, puzzles offer an array of benefits linked to a child’s development.
In other words children learn new skills while solving puzzles. Let’s take a look at some of these benefits one by one.
- Shape recognition
Recognising and sorting shapes is an important part of a child’s development.
Puzzles, with their bright pieces, help a child recognise different shapes since all the different shapes fit into each other to complete a puzzle.
- Cognitive skills
Puzzle toys help develop cognitive skills in a child.
Cognitive skills are the skills that the brain uses to think, read, learn, remember, reason and pay attention.
All these skills together form the knowledge bank that the brain uses every day.
When a child plays with a puzzle he/she recognises and understands that the puzzle pieces fit together to complete a larger picture (of an animal like a giraffe for instance).
This helps a kid understand how themes work and fit into the world around them.
- Hand eye coordination
Puzzles require a kid to learn to make their eyes and hands work together to fit the right piece into the right space.
While trying different permutations and combinations kid’s eyes, brain and hands work together developing his/her hand eye coordination skills.
Since a puzzle works in the way of hit and trial a kid tries multiple times to fit the right piece in the right place.
In doing so, kid’s memory functions are developed and a kid learns the right space for the correct piece of the puzzle.
He/she learns which coloured piece goes where and what is the sequence to be followed (if any).
After a few times of trials, kid will remember exactly how the puzzle will be solved.
At that stage you should get them a new puzzle which is a little harder than the previous one.
- Fine motor skills
Puzzles require a child to grasp, hold and fit the puzzle pieces exactly into a cut out shape or slot.
This process can involve multiple attempts until the right match is found.
This process develops muscle movements and dexterity in hands and fingers.
Overall the process of picking up pieces, moving them and manipulating them to fit the right slot develops fine motor skills in a child.
Fine motor skills help in handwriting etc.
- Problem solving skills
Another skill that a child learns from puzzles is problem solving.
This could well be the one of the most important skills that a puzzle teaches a child.
When a child starts off solving a puzzle he/she faces many challenges in figuring out which is the right piece for the right space in the puzzle.
Thinking logically and coming to a conclusion of the ‘right fit’ a child learn a new skill of problem solving.
- Setting small goals
A child will develop their own strategy of solving a puzzle.
For example he may start out by putting in the corner pieces first and then the centrepieces etc. in doing so a child learns to set small goals in order to fulfil a larger goal of solving a puzzle.
There are various types of puzzles available in the market today. Depending upon the age of the kids, their interests and their aptitude you can get them the right puzzles which they will enjoy solving.
Puzzles are also a great idea for gifting at birthday parties. Just make sure that you buy the recommended puzzle for the age group of the kid.