- Educational building blocks are anything BUT a fad. They are the building blocks (get it) of STEM education. It helps your child work through problems, practice critical thinking, and use their imagination all while building various EQ and IQ skills.
- Building blocks that lock in place help helps children practice their small motor skills and learn patience. As they practice patience, they’re learning how to focus longer periods of time on one activity. It requires concentration, learning how things fit into each other and exploring their creativity. Putting their idea of what a house or rocketship looks like in their head onto 3-D objects.
- Building blocks for toddlers is a great way to help your child explore their unique capabilities. The passion of learning and sticking with something fizzles out as they get older. With that, they are more likely to never experience or practice something that they may be amazing at. That’s why it’s extremely important to instill these positive feelings on education now.
While there are so many benefits of educational building toys for a toddler’s development, I’m going to tell you two important benefits that if practiced, it will naturally bring out the other benefits.
But first, are these types of toys a fad?
Are Educational Building Toys a Fad?
No. It’s the most versatile STEM toy that grows with your child and lasts practically forever.
First, what is a “fad”:
- Gets you and everyone around you pumped up for it and if you think about it, teaches you nothing new and doesn’t help you long term.
- Something that isn’t important to you and not needed
- Pressures you into being with the cool crowd. Things that work well don’t need peer pressure to make a sale.
Examples of fad toys: Fidget Spinners, SillyBandz, Webkins, and whatever toy comes out in relation to a new character from a new movie that has no educational use.
Examples of toys that are NOT fads:
- Puzzles, building blocks, playdoh, arts and craft activities
With fast and easy shipping on Amazon and pretty much every online retailer, it’s so easy to spend $20 here and there on things that we’ve been told we need to have to make our lives easier and/or better.
That includes toys for our kids too! Of course, they want the next best thing especially if it’s related to a new movie or show. But, are educational building toys the real deal or is it just another fad?
STEM education is anything but a fad. It’s a way of learning and it’s not a new concept. In fact, it’s a proven method that is so desperately needed in the USA.
With that comes specific types of toys that are STEM-certified as well as fun at-home activities to keep our kids from boredom, which is a recipe for more emotional outbursts, inability to have good and restful nap time.
Educational building blocks are anything BUT a fad.
That brings me to your next probable question, are building toys worth the investment?
They are the building blocks (get it) of STEM education. It helps your child work through problems, practice critical thinking, and use their imagination when incorporated with STEM education.
Our kids think they’re just playing, but they’re learning how to work through problems using creativity. It’s really one of the easiest and most useful ways to keep your child entertained as they learn through the exploration of building blocks.
But, won’t my kids be bored with them after a couple of weeks?
Nope. I’ve spoken to so many daycare teachers and daycare directors. The one thing that toddlers and young children run to every time is building blocks. It never gets old. Sure, for a short time, they’ll want to play with a fad toy, but they always come running back to blocks and puzzle blocks.
It defiantly helps that there are no TVs in a preschool or daycare as the main distraction. If that’s an issue, this blog explains how to decrease screentime without a constant fight or meltdown.
Anyway, toy blocks are so versatile as it stimulates the imagination when they’re building space ships, their home, or a waterpark.
This is one of the most engaging and evergreen toys that are affordable and last forever.
For example, before they get ready to build, it is great for learning opposites of size and practicing what colors mix together to make a new color by grouping all the colors together that make pink or orange.
Another pre-play activity I have my girls do is take the blocks and organize them by color before they use them to build.
Then, they can put blocks together that are similar in size.
After, they take the blocks that are the same size and separate them by shape. Once they separated them all, it makes it easier for them to visualize the tools they have to create a masterpiece.
I stumbled upon this blog Mommyuniversity and she couldn’t have said it any better, “Building toys have significant cognitive and academic benefits for children of all ages. Not only are they fun and exciting, but they help kids develop a wide variety of skills and abilities. They help prepare kids for school, sports, and life! I guess you can say that these toys are the “building blocks” for success!”
I couldn’t agree more with what Mommyuniversity said.
Now we know that it’s not a fad… This brings me to one very important life skill that is taught and instilled as a young child or not.
Patience and coping skills.
Will Educational Building Toys for Kids Help Teach Patience?
When your little one is building something, have you ever noticed their face deep into thought while trying to get their pieces to stick together or wondering why it won’t lock in place? That’s them focusing on one thing at a time which is hard for a child to do these days because of all of the stimulation around them.
Let’s face it, most adults have this problem too because we’re always looking for a distraction at work or even while we’re watching TV and a commercial goes on.
Focus and patience go hand-in-hand. Patience without focus will not bring success.
Now that they’re focused on figuring out why it’s not working they may be frustrated and they might get upset and cry at first, but this is them expressing their feelings and learning how to process them with our guidance. This is where learning patience comes into play.
Soon after, they start to develop healthy coping habits that will translate into various aspects of life. There will be many different situations that bring on the same feelings and it will remind them how they reacted previously when they were frustrated building.
This is where they can reflect and think when they got frustrated and cried it didn’t help them, but telling their mom or dad that it wasn’t working or that they’re upset helped them a lot faster and it was less stressful. It becomes a more positive experience for them.
Now that you remember that moment of your child deep in thought, the face of satisfaction on their face is priceless when you get to see the first time they worked through their problems. Jumping for joy and feeling so smart.
It’s the cutest thing to watch!
This is helping them build one of the most important skills in life, patience!
With patience, they’re learning how to control their emotions in a healthy way even if they’re anxious, eager, or tired.
For example, many children act out to get what they want. That is a perfect opportunity to teach them more about how to regain self-control before giving them what they want.
That includes when they throw a fit because they want immediate help with their building blocks or they’ll throw themselves on the ground and make sure you run over. Don’t worry, I speak from experience clearly (double crying face).
Is it a Better Way to Discover Unique Capabilities for Your Child?
One of my favorite quotes is by Jean Piaget, “The goal of education is not to increase the amount of knowledge but to create the possibilities for a child to invent and discover, to create men who are capable of doing new things.”
We can’t invent and discover new things without focus, patience, and having a passion for the process while thoroughly enjoying what we do.
Children are full of curiosity and are open to learning anything and everything. By the time they’re in third grade, this love of education starts to fizzle because they get frustrated with having one way to either understand or suffer in school. That doesn’t help them learn in the most effective way for their personal needs. That kills their confidence so fast.
The one size fits all approach doesn’t work. It’s full of memorization, not absorbing what they’re learning to process and use laster.
STEM education doesn’t work like that and that’s why it works so well for all different types of kids. STEM is where they are learning skills that will help build their EQ and IQ to their full potential.
There are various ways children learn. With that, your child will learn what they enjoy the most. When they are little, they have no idea what they like long-term and what they’re good at. This is the discovery phase and it will always change throughout life, but the basics generally stay the same.
Is it building or putting things together?
Do they enjoy taking things apart to see how each piece of the product works together and separately?
Does your child show interest in designing something or solving problems?
Building blocks will give your child time to learn what they like about the process because it fills all of the above.
STEM toys are jam-packed with skill-building tactics, even though it just looks like blocks that lock in place.
Did you know that building blocks foster individual creativity?
With that, creativity sparks imagination which is shown to boost cognitive, social, and academic growth.
It’s a domino effect of positive outcomes, what’s better than that?!
A few ways to figure out your child’s unique capabilities from childdevelopmentinfo.com:
- Observe what they play with up close and from afar so that you see how they play independently and with friends.
- Ask them questions that provoke different feelings and force them to think a little deeper each time. This will help them learn about their own feelings and understand why they’re interested in the topic of choice.
- Play with them! It’s such a great way to bond with them.
- Exposure helps them figure out what they like. Whether it’s museums for one week and playing a sport in the backyard.
- Be patient with them. They’re still learning about their own emotions and how to process them.
- Encourage them whether it’s to take a break or to keep going especially if they fail. We all do.
The Lock and Learn is a perfect example of a STEM-certified puzzle toy that also features building toys for toddlers.
It helps them practice:
- Small motor skills
- Critical thinking skills
- Patience with making the right shape fit into the board
- Animal names and they can repeat the sounds of them to further solidify what it is
- Provides creative play within a structured space by taking off the background image and using building blocks
- They lock in place and unlock using a tab located that makes them gently “jump” off making the clean-up just as fun for them.
What have they shown an interest in as they play? Comment below, I’d love to hear about it.
Share this blog on Twitter or Facebook so other parents can learn more about STEM and #STEMeducation, don’t forget to tag @brickmates.