The puzzles are a challenge for any child and adult. They force us to maximize our visual capacity, concentrate, help us relax … But they also bring many benefits to the physical and intellectual development of the smallest of the house. The puzzles make it easier for children to begin to think in three dimensions and become familiar with figures and shapes. To make the puzzle, the little ones must analyze and think about the different positions in which the pieces can go. This causes them to develop logical reasoning.
The technique you use when making puzzles will adapt as its difficulty increases, and you may one day be surprised to see how your child teaches you to do them differently. In general, it is recommended to start with small puzzles with few pieces, showing the child the model and letting him act alone. When he already has more complex assemblies, recommend that he start at the corners and edge of the frame, which he can identify because the pieces have a smooth side. Then you can organize them by colors that you will be grouping in little piles and placing where appropriate.
Among its benefits.
1. They improve visual memory. The puzzles are based on ordering a lot of pieces to copy an initial image. This improves our visual memory, as children fix the model on their retina and try to look at it as few times as possible. In the first puzzles that you do together it is good that you keep the model image close so that she can look at it as many times as she needs. As you gain confidence and skill, you will need it less and there will come a time when you will memorize it. That day you will have to go on to a puzzle of greater complexity.
2. They develop concentration. Can you imagine an activity that needs more ability to abstract from the environment than to decide which piece goes in which place? If you have a very impatient child at home, puzzles will improve her ability to concentrate, something that will help her when she has to do homework or study. Of course, if you notice that the anxiety to finish it may be better than you limit the daily time you dedicate to the puzzle. It is one thing to concentrate and another to obsess.
3. Stimulates spatial and mathematical ability. The puzzles represent a perspective thanks to the games of light and shadow and instruct the children on the different planes in which the objects are located – close, at medium distance or far. In addition, they train problem-solving: if you have five pieces of the same color and only need one, they should look at the size of the available space and the shape of the piece to choose from.
4. Improves psychomotor development. Picking up the pieces and placing them in the right place stimulates hand-eye coordination and trains children to make the pincer with their thumb and forefinger. In this sense, cube puzzles are a good toy for babies before 2 years of age.
5. Teaches self-control and reflection. As much as you want to put a piece on, you shouldn’t do it until you are sure of it.
6. Improve self-esteem. What pride you will feel when you make more and more complicated puzzles! In addition, you will train your tolerance for frustration when you see that it is difficult for you to complete it.
7. Stimulates relaxation. Focusing so much on what is in front of them helps children relieve their anxiety and tension level, making them a good option for the final stretch of the day, before bath, dinner and bedtime story.
8. Improve family relationships. Are you one of those who sits in front of a puzzle, and you do it together? Sharing these moments with the little ones helps to stimulate attachment and gives us great moments.
The most suitable puzzle for every age
For babies up to 2 years old. Until this age they are not trained to assemble puzzles, but they can start with puzzle cubes. The objective will be to improve the ability to make the clamp with the hands and the eye-hand coordination.
From 2 to 3 years it is recommended that they begin to make puzzles of up to four pieces. Show them the puzzle made, take it apart and help him put it back together. Little by little it will do it alone. Choose puzzles of shapes, animals or your favorite characters.
Between 3 and 4 years will go from four to twelve pieces.
From 4 to 5 it is recommended that they go beyond shapes and drawings, and start doing puzzles that help them become familiar with the letters of the alphabet or numbers.
After 5 years, the difficulty will gradually increase as you solve the simplest puzzles with success.
From 10 years onwards they can perfectly solve complex and 3-dimensional puzzles.
In short, through the puzzles, children train fine motor skills, improve eye-hand coordination and exercise concentration and patience. They also learn to solve problems with strategies and in a structured way, something that is achieved through the repetitive classification of the pieces. They are able to better recognize shapes and colors, and their ability to concentrate and memory increase, especially short-term memory. Tenacity and tolerance for frustration are also exercised. Children’s puzzles have myriad positive effects on manual skills, cognitive development, and visual perception. Finally, do not forget that in the end the little ones are rewarded with a fantastic image, and they feel proud of themselves. Puzzles keep the mind active and are a source of joy.
If you are interested in purchasing some of these games for your children, visit our puzzle section click on the link below.