The Best Kids Puzzles To Buy This Christmas

Christmas is right around the corner and the biggest dilemma every parent has is choosing the right gift for their child. Sifting through tons of reviews and testimonials and trying to find something that will be a wonderful and engaging surprise can be tricky.

And what if that gift was not only fun, but could also help your child to develop their memory, co-ordination and problem-solving skills. 

Enter puzzles, the perfect gift for any child of any age!

What are the benefits of a puzzle for kids?

Here are some incredible benefits that puzzles can provide for your child, regardless of age:

  • Improved memory

When children play with puzzles, they train their brains to connect and strengthen memories. They must remember the pieces, shapes, colours, and how they fit together. As they repeat this activity, it reinforces skills related to memory, concentration and problem-solving.

Consistent exercise of this part of the brain helps strengthen memory and allows children to better remember facts, figures and words. Puzzles can also help increase their reasoning skills, which assists them academically.

  • Enhanced motor skills

Puzzles help improve motor skills by providing children with an engaging way to practice manipulating small objects with their fingers and hands. This helps build strong, supple muscles, which optimize hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills.

These motor skills are vital for children as they develop and become better able to perform activities such as handwriting, colouring, drawing and managing daily tasks. You can help your kids improve their fine motor skills by gifting them puzzles that require small pieces and movements, such as jigsaw and tangram puzzles.

  • Better problem-solving skills

Putting a puzzle together requires a basic level of problem-solving skills. As the pieces are all mixed up, the child needs to figure out how the pieces fit together. This helps them to develop their problem-solving skills, which can translate into other life skills such as decision-making and creative thinking.

A study at Michigan shows that doing puzzles for as little as 25 minutes a day can boost your IQ by 4 points. A higher IQ encourages problem-solving skills, helping kids become better at understanding the world around them and making better choices.

  • Improved spatial reasoning

When children fit together puzzle pieces, they develop their spatial reasoning skills. Spatial reasoning is the ability to understand and manipulate objects with each other, whether that be mentally or physically.

This is a vital skill for kids as they grow up. It enables them to visualize concepts and perform activities such as reading maps, figuring out directions and navigating through spaces. Researchers from the University of Chicago performed a study that showed a direct link between spatial reasoning and increased academic performance. You can help your child develop spatial reasoning skills by encouraging them to complete puzzles involving 3-D objects.

  • Higher self-esteem

"I did it" is often heard when a child excitedly completes a puzzle. This accomplishment is great for the child's self-esteem and can motivate them to take on any challenge. Parents and teachers can help children feel more confident by using puzzles to overcome obstacles and achieve goals.

And when the child completes their puzzle successfully, they get a sense of satisfaction and feelings of closeness or mastery over the task. This satisfaction boosts self-esteem, leading to greater confidence and performance in school, sports, and other activities.

  • Enhanced concentration

According to child development experts, you can expect your child to concentrate for about 2-5 minutes for their age. This means that a 3-year-old can focus for about 6 to 15 minutes, while a 4-year-old can focus for 8 to 10 minutes. As kids work on solving a puzzle, they are able to increase their concentration span and focus for extended periods. This helps them to stay on task for longer and helps them to pay attention to detail. 

Puzzle play also encourages children to take their time and think before acting, helping them stay focused on a task until they complete it. With increased concentration, children can perform tasks like reading and writing better.

  • Better team building

Puzzles provide a wonderful opportunity for children to learn social skills. For example, puzzle building may be a combined effort with other children, encouraging them to work as a team and locate each piece correctly.

This helps develop language skills and time management and improves the ability to work with others. Parents and teachers can promote teamwork by providing only 1 or 2 pieces for each child and encouraging them to cooperate and share to complete the puzzle.

How to Choose the Right Puzzles for Your Child

While getting your child puzzles is great, it's important to choose the right ones based on their age and abilities. Here are some tips to help you pick out the best puzzles for your little one:

Consider their age

An 8-year-old isn't interested in the same puzzles as a 4-year-old. Age-appropriate puzzles keep kids engaged and also challenge them without being overwhelming. As a general guideline, knobbed puzzles with a few pieces are appropriate for one-year-olds, while jigsaw puzzles with up to 15 to 20 pieces are better for four-year-old children. Older children can handle puzzles with 35 to 50 pieces.

Make sure the puzzles you choose are age-appropriate, and consider the number of pieces, size, and other special features like animal shapes or alphabets. Most boxes will have recommended ages for each puzzle.

Check the size of the pieces

Puzzles for kids come in many different sizes. When choosing a puzzle, look at the size of the pieces to ensure that they're appropriate for your child's little hands to pick up and put together.

Make sure that the pieces are not too big or too small. Pieces too large may easily fit together, but they might not help develop your child's fine motor skills. If they're too small, your child may become frustrated and overwhelmed by the challenge. You can also look for puzzles with built-in features, like a tray to hold the pieces or magnets to secure them.

Look for specific themes and design

Kids are attracted to bright colours and images. Look for kids’ puzzles that feature fun and engaging designs. Themes like animals, letters, numbers or shapes encourage your child's imagination and make the puzzle more enjoyable.

If your child is interested in a specific topic or theme, such as dinosaurs or unicorns, look for puzzles with those themes. Association with their interests can help them stay engaged and motivated to complete a puzzle.

Are you ready to get the best gift this Christmas?

This Christmas is the ideal time to get your children some puzzles and help them reap the educational benefits of this wonderful play activity. Many benefits make puzzles an excellent addition to your child's developmental toolkit, so choose age-appropriate puzzles and help your little one build concentration, focus, teamwork, and problem-solving skills.

With the right tools and support, kids can succeed in any challenge that comes their way. Keep encouraging your child by providing positive reinforcement and they'll be able to develop the skills required to succeed in life in any situation. Check out our range of kids puzzles and Londji's children’s puzzles – perfect for Christmas gifting!

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