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7 Reasons Puzzles Play an Important Role in Childhood Development

Nov 17, 2021

Toys like puzzles have been used for centuries to teach children new skills. Puzzles in particular have been shown to help children develop lifelong strategies that can be used to find success in social situations, academics, and more. Check out some of the top ways these popular products can have a huge impact on childhood learning.

Social Development
Learning how to navigate through social situations is one of the hardest challenges children face. Thankfully, lessons from puzzle play can be a valuable resource for discovering healthy methods of working and playing with others. When playing with puzzles, it’s easy to let other children and adults alike share in the fun or learn to take turns.

Emotional Development
While working on the puzzle, the child is likely to show emotional responses as the puzzle becomes challenging and the child attempts to solve it. If negative emotions arise, this is a perfect opportunity for parents to note emotional patterns and work on a more positive way to cope with stress or frustration. Moreover, as the child solves the puzzle, he or she is able to experience the rewards of being patient.

Physical Development
Puzzles also go beyond the social and emotional aspects of playtime to develop hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills. For young children and some older children, learning to piece together a jigsaw puzzle, for example, can be a struggle. Such puzzles offer children a chance to practice picking up the pieces at their own pace and place them in a way that fits together to form a picture.

Cognitive Development
Overcoming cognitive or physical challenges to solve a puzzle is an excellent way to develop strategic thinking skills. Also, discovering new techniques to find a solution as well as stepping outside of the traditional order of sequences to develop a different way to finish the activity is a big part of the puzzle appeal for people of all ages. Learning that taking a unique approach can be effective at completing a task is a powerful understanding that can unlock opportunities throughout the individual’s lifetime. Then, another level of difficulty can be added as the child works the puzzle backwards, tries to solve a larger puzzle, or races an opponent to the finish!

Self-Esteem Development
As the puzzles increasingly become more difficult, the child begins to develop a sense of accomplishment. Unlike math or sports, children can spend as much time as they like solving puzzles. There is no pressure to achieve a certain grade or score the winning goal as it is just for fun, which makes it the perfect pastime activity for everyone. Still, it can be hard to put it down and walk away until it is solved. After the puzzle is finished, the child’s self-esteem gets a boost as that puzzle level has been mastered.

Language Development
In addition to helping children develop the above skills, puzzles are often used to encourage the testing out new vocabulary words. Jigsaw puzzles, in particular, make excellent activities for children learning to speak as they can learn adjectives for shapes, textures, and colors. They can also work on forming sentences to explain how the puzzle is being pulled apart or put together. When finishing the puzzle, the children can also begin to discuss the picture as a whole and whether they plan to keep it intact, store it for another time in the future, or tear it apart to start anew.

For parents, puzzles can provide a more calming activity where talking about events of the day or hobbies and interests can be an easier transition. Counselors can use puzzles to provide a less stressful environment for children to discuss areas of concern. Of course, puzzles provide excellent subjects for essays and learning sentence structure at school.

Where to Find Wholesale Popular Puzzles
If you are a retailer and would like to stock your inventory with an assortment of popular puzzles, including cubes and travel-sized jigsaw puzzles, large jigsaw puzzles, or jigsaw puzzles where an app can change the image for a new puzzle every time, register your store with License 2 Play. Our registration form is safe and incredibly easy to fill out online. Once approved, you can shop for trending toys, games, and activities in all categories that are sure to be a hit with customers!