Creating walls, houses, buildings, bridges or any other architectural work is as challenging as it is fun for kids. Depending on their age, stacking toys for children will vary in size and difficulty. But they will always bring many benefits for the development of the little ones.
Everyone remembers using some object that was in their way as a child to build a house, a fort, or even a castle. Although it may seem like a simple hobby, construction represents an extremely enriching activity for children, from an intellectual to a motor level.
This type of toy can be used from the first year of age when the child is already able to coordinate movements better. In the beginning, of course, they will barely be able to fit the pieces together, but they will gradually learn. After a while, however, children become real building professionals, either with the classic Lego or with one of the many similar toys available in shops today.
Benefits of stacking toys for children
Stacking can help boost fine and gross motor skills and help your baby develop better eye-hand coordination. They also help babies learn about spatial relationships (like under and on), and shapes. Overall, they’re a great learning tool. Plus, they generally don’t take up a ton of space and are fairly simple to clean. Among the main positive effects that these toys cause in children, we can list:
- They develop coordination and fine motor skills. Through construction games, children acquire greater dexterity with their hands, especially women, who usually develop these functions better.
- Helps them understand geometric shapes, colours, sizes, and spatial concepts, such as high or low, narrow or wide and long or short.
- Stimulates skills such as concentration, attention, creativity, and imagination.
- Requires planning, a scheme or model to follow, and, when playing in a group, requires dialogue, cooperation, and teamwork.
- They stimulate the understanding of reality and the representation of roles and functions. By playing with other children, it is possible to simulate working on a building site.
- They help to become familiar with the laws of physics, such as gravity and balance, as well as the possible actions: the lever, the use of an inclined plane or, at more advanced levels, the use of pulleys.
- They help to increase children’s self-esteem and confidence. The achievement of goals and the appreciation of effort and results by parents (a fundamental thing) will make children feel proud and motivated to always try to improve.
- They create the habit of organisation, whenever children are taught to put their materials away after playing.
Where and when are stacking toys ideal?
Children’s play space, by nature, is at home. It is important, therefore, that children have this type of material at their disposal. In addition to the advantages already mentioned, they are a good option for rainy days or when the child is ill. The possibilities are extremely varied. You can even watch videos online to discover new techniques and try to reproduce them.
On the other hand, stacking toys for children is also an ideal activity for the classroom. Especially in the first years of school. In this sense, the presence of an educator who guides the process through instructions and advice can be of great help.
According to a report produced by UNICEF and the OEI (Organization of Ibero-American States), the participation of an educator can enrich play and learning dynamics by introducing roles, models to develop, and materials to select.
Tips for stacking toys for children
As we mentioned earlier, today there is not only Lego. There is a wide variety of models at our disposal. Some of them are:
- Blocks for building characters and scenarios. This type of ride-on toy offers components for creating robots, princess castles with walls and doors, and any kind of fantasy world.
- Blocks for building animals. They come with the necessary parts to create farms, stables, and corrals. It also allows you to assemble the animals that will live in these places.
- Construction of work elements. Ideal for simulating professions. You can find parts to assemble police officers, fire trucks, helicopters, and machines for any kind of job.
- Race track construction. This type combines two of children’s great passions: building and racing cars. In addition to cars, we can build race tracks, garages, and mechanics’ workshops.
Finally, it is worth reiterating that the number of pieces, as well as the size and difficulty of the models to build vary according to the age of the child. Therefore, practically all children can guarantee hours and hours of fun with these toys that never go out of fashion.
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