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What We Learn When We Play With Puzzles

 

Wooden Puzzles are an important learning tool that can be used with children to enhance child development. The following are just a few of the many benefits that can be gained when using this incredibly well rounded learning tool.
 
Puzzles
  • capture attention
  • motivate participation
  • stimulate conversation
  • can be challenging without being overwhelming
  • encourage success
  • encourage independence and self esteem
Puzzles are a Self Correcting Learning Tool
When Children attempt to place a puzzle piece in it's place it will only fit if it is placed properly in the right space. The act of manipulating each piece, turning it and testing the fit, is the way children learn to problem solve and develop critical thinking.
Language Skills
Puzzles offer children an opportunity to develop many language skills. When a child asks for a certain piece they will often describe what they are looking for. For example, the round piece, the blue bumpy piece, etc. Puzzles are often used when working with Autistic children who have delayed speech ability as a playful tool to encourage speech.
Math Skills
Puzzles teach children several basic math concepts as well. While working with a puzzle children learn to categorize and organize pieces while doing that they are able to classify and label the pieces as well. Eye-Hand Coordination
Wooden puzzles build eye-hand coordination. The ability to coordinate what the eye sees, the mind wants to do, and what the hands can accomplish takes a lot of practice. Puzzles offer an enjoyable way to practice this skill while encouraging independence.
Fine Motor Ability
Puzzles offer a fun way to develop fine motor ability. Children need to develop strength in the muscles in their fingers so that they can grasp things and hold onto them. This will later give them the ability to hold a pencil.
Social Skills
Wooden Puzzles offer opportunities to expand social skills as well. When children work cooperatively to complete a puzzle they engage in conversation. They develop a plan to solve the puzzle, they take turns and help each other solve problems as they arise.
Developing Persistence
When a child works on a puzzle until completion the child is developing persistence. Once the puzzle is solved the child can feel a sense of accomplishment which boosts his independence and self esteem. Adaptable and Abstract Thinking
Children use adaptable thinking and deductive reasoning skills when they find different ways to put the pieces together. They gain the ability to think abstractly when they are able to see negative space, like the space where a puzzle piece may fit, and figure out what type of shape would be needed to fill that space.
Spur Imagination and Creativity
Playing with mosaic puzzles encourages imagination and creativity. The colors and shapes of the mosaic pieces serve to stimulate brain cells and encourage prolonged interest when arranging the pieces in endless designs.
 
In conclusion, wooden puzzles like the ones offered at www.puzzled1.com are an incredible learning tools. I believe that of all the educational toys, wooden puzzles are the most versatile and well rounded learning tool you can purchase for your child because they offer a host of valuable educational benefits that support child development.
 
About the Author
Jeannette Aragon is a former early childhood education teacher of 16 years. She Worked with children from 6 months to 7 years of age. She is certified in early childhood education and child development as well as administration of an early childhood center. Jeannette is also the owner of Puzzled - Handcrafted Wooden Puzzles and Toys and the web sitewww.puzzled1.com where she sells wooden puzzles that she has handmade. All of her wooden puzzles available for purchase at www.puzzled1.com were designed to aid in the development of children as discussed in the above article.