Written by Tom Holdcroft
Puzzles are having a renaissance. It’s official. Parents across Australia are seeing the benefits of encouraging their children towards these toys and the invaluable advantages they can provide. Often, we consider children’s development to only take place during the critical early childhood years; of course this is a vital time, but our children are always developing, and need the right tools, such as puzzles, to help them.
Puzzles can be an excellent resource in helping children with memory. If we think about the process of completing a puzzle, logic encourages us to understand that when a piece doesn’t fit, we don’t want to select that piece again, we also remember where that piece was when we need it for the correct position. Moreover, when a child feels rewarded by the satisfying outcome of completing the puzzle, and has enjoyed it, they will repeat this process testing their memory over and over. They will be continuously sorting colours, shapes and sizes in their head.
Some benefits, such as those mentioned above, apply to children of all ages. However, puzzles can also be a great tool for the older ones too. As children progress along their learning journey you will see the pieces in our puzzle kits get smaller, and the designs more intricate. Progression like this is designed to constantly improve cognitive development. Children are guided through their development learning practical skills such as problem solving, most of the time they don’t even realise how much they are taking in because they are having such a wonderful time.
The advantages of puzzling are not limited to just these practical skills. As children get older, they can often face similar challenges to those we face. Having solid foundation built through activities which cater to social interaction skills, can give your child what they need to be able to approach these situations with ease. Puzzles are excellent in improving children’s self-esteem, and in encouraging skills in problem resolution.
On these cold winter nights, settle down in the warm with a puzzle. Have fun as a family and watch as your child has a fantastic time, all the while acquiring an essential new skill set.