What Moms Ought To Know About STEM Puzzles

  • Puzzles are the building blocks to a well-rounded individual.  STEM puzzles are specifically designed for every age group to develop, challenge, and enhance all 3 skills; EQ, IQ, and PQ.
  • The earlier your child is introduced to STEM puzzles the more likely they’ll pick it up and love it! Feed them more. This is a great habit to develop and it starts with what toys we bring into the home.
  • Puzzles are perfect for independent play when we can’t entertain and it ensures our kids are up to all good and zero bad like roaming the internet. Plus, it’s perfect for developing social skills and forming bonds with your children. It’s the best of both worlds!

 

 

Do STEM Puzzles Advance Learning?

What Moms Ought To Know About STEM Puzzles blog - STEM puzzles advance education

Short Answer

Yes.

The building blocks to a well-rounded individual is the proper development of emotional skill, cognitive skill, and physical skill. STEM puzzles are specifically designed for every age group to develop, challenge, and enhance all 3 skills; EQ, IQ, and PQ.

 

Explanation:

 

According to Teach.com, when your child is alone with a puzzle you can expect three basic skills to be built:

Physical skills — from holding puzzle pieces and turning them until they fit

Cognitive skills — as they solve the problems of a puzzle

Emotional skills — they learn patience and are rewarded when they complete the puzzle

Physical Skill

Did you know that puzzles are one of the top toys used in occupational therapy because it helps so much with developing and maintaining hand-eye coordination, range of motion, visual-spatial skills, and so much more? Puzzles are chosen for a range of therapies from babies to the elderly.

It’s a classic go-to for anyone at literally any stage of development. It’s something that never gets old because it works so well.

For babies and toddlers, when they are introduced to puzzles, it helps them develop fine motor skills as they have to fit the puzzle inside the correct spot. This is directly linked to handwriting and body awareness. Interestingly, it helps with body awareness in that the brain is developing messenger pathways to properly communicate to the muscles when and how to move accurately.

A good way to know if your child needs help in this area is if they:

  • Have messy, slow or laborious drawing, coloring or writing skills.
  • Fatigue quickly when typing or using a mouse on a computer.
  • Have difficulty (or achieves a messy/choppy outcome) when using scissors.
  • Have difficulty performing precise manipulation tasks (i.e. doing up buttons, threading, or tying shoelaces).
  • Dislike precise hand and eye coordination tasks (e.g. construction).
  • Have difficulty performing age-appropriate self-care tasks independently.
  • Tire easily when engaged in fine motor tasks.

This is such an important skill to develop because it is linked to poor behavior habits like inability to cope with frustrations, lower self-esteem as they compare themselves to others, and impeds academic performance.

 

Cognitive Skill

 

Cognitive skills are more than just learning information. It’s a mindset where someone can process and speak about new information with ease.

As we mature we naturally develop the ability to advance to higher levels. Meaning, children should show improvements with critical thinking, understand relationships between ideas and grasp the process of cause and effect.

Stem puzzles are one of the easiest and most affordable games or toys that grow with children and help them further develop this skill.

It works great as they practice memorizing what puzzle pieces they saw earlier that didn’t fit, they learn how to map out the easiest way to put the puzzle back together. Should they start with the border and work their way in or start from a corner?

It’s all about learning how to solve a problem and to never quit if you fail.

Even better, learning to think critically and continuing with trial and error is crucial to becoming a problem solver as they mature into adulthood.  Problem-solving skills make our lives so much easier whether it’s personally or professionally.

Plus, children learn to pay attention for longer periods of time. I don’t know about you, but all I see these days are children and adults with extremely short attention spends. I even notice with myself, I’m constantly checking my phone for some type of entertainment.

Puzzles re-ground us by entertaining us, keeping us focused and curious too. We want to win and we want to feel good.

 

Emotional Skill

What exactly is emotional skill development? Well, it’s more complex kind of like when my daughter was  3 years old, she had a meltdown because I wouldn’t drive my car into the ocean. It makes no sense, but her feelings are really hurt and life is unfair. Feelings and people are complicated.

As children develop this skill at a young age, they’re being set up for more success when they’re older. It could even help them process their own emotions and be emotionally healthy.

Emotional development is when children understand the feelings of others, control their own feelings and behaviors and build relationships.

Positive social and emotional skills are so important.

Puzzles help our children practice empathy. Let’s say your child has a friend over and they’re playing with the puzzles. The little friend is getting frustrated because the puzzle won’t fit and your little one shows advanced emotional skill.

They say, “it’s okay, let me show you how it works” or “let me help you”. This is a huge milestone and a proud parent win!

That’s where STEM puzzles from Brickmates come into play. They’re the building blocks (pun intended) of education-based and interactive play.

Will My Child Out Grow Puzzles?

What Moms Ought To Know About STEM Puzzles blog - Will My Child Out Grow Puzzle

Short Answer

Not likely.

The earlier your child is introduced to STEM puzzles the more likely they’ll pick it up and love it! Feed them more. This is a great habit to develop and it starts with what toys we bring into the home.

Children are curious, they love to build, and they love to learn. They have so many options and toy fads change faster than a newborn in diapers. Puzzles never change because they’re perfectly built to hold the interest of anyone at any age…forever.

 

Explanation:

Experts say the earlier children are introduced to STEM activities, STEM puzzles included, the higher their chances are of falling in love with STEM-based education. Because of that, they’ll love the challenges faced, even lost, and won as they play with puzzles.

Puzzles pieces either fit or they don’t. Since they’re so fun, kids will persist through the failure and feel on top of the world when they accomplish such a hard task.

Don’t you love seeing your child feel good about themselves? It breaks my heart when my little one is sad or disappointed and puzzles help build her confidence in her ability to work through a problem and not give up.

Self-love is something that is self-taught and as we provide our kids with the best tools to set them up for success, we get to watch them grow and develop into a flourishing adult.

STEM puzzles reinforce their strengths and help them focus on navigating through their weakness.

Now that they have learned how to independently play, they may invite a friend or family member to join in on the fun.

Puzzles also bring people together at all ages.

Once you fall in love with puzzles, it’s a forever type of deal. Your little one will always go back to the classic puzzle in-between all of the fads.

The key to getting your child to like playing with them long term is to make sure they are developmentally appropriate.

For example, 1-3-year-olds are best engaged with puzzle pieces that are huge, interesting pictures, and have 10 or less puzzle pieces.

This is so they’re not overwhelmed and so they can learn spatial awareness as they’re just developing fine motor skills.

Now, that they mastered it they want to do bigger and better. It builds their confidence. As they grow, so do their puzzles!

For a child that is in elementary school, we can take it up a notch since they already have experience. That’s where Stack by Numbers steps in. They’re smaller and stackable making fine motor skills even more advanced. Plus, it helps with counting which is perfect as they’re learning how to add and subtract.

Learning at home after school is where a love for learning develops. It gives them a break from the mundane school day filled with memorization instead of absorbing and learning mixed with zero creativity while puzzles provide learning through hands-on fun.

This stage is where they develop their own unique strategies like sorting puzzle pieces by color, shape, or picture. It may seem like it’s not that big of a deal, but this is going to prepare them for interest and understanding in math and science classes.

The number of puzzle pieces that are appropriate can be up to 500 pieces depending on their experience.

 

Are STEM Puzzles Best for Independent Play Only?

What Moms Ought To Know About STEM Puzzles blog - Are STEM Puzzles Best for Independent Play Only

 

Short Answer

No.

Puzzles that are STEM-based are versatile and that is good for us parents who are juggling a professional life, personal life, and parent life.

Puzzles are perfect for independent play when we can’t entertain and it ensures our kids are up to all good and zero bad like roaming the internet. Plus, it’s perfect for developing social skills and forming bonds with your children. It’s the best of both worlds!

 

Explanation:

I know there are like a thousand things that make puzzles amazing to keep in our home, but for me, I love how versatile puzzles are in that if we’re busy, it will hold our children’s attention span without making them technology zombies.

They keep them engaged in all the right ways when I’m trying to cook dinner or you know, run a business.

But, I also love my babies more than anything and mom guilt sets in, you know what I’m talking about ladies. The balance between both worlds is difficult.

Puzzles bring us together. In between chopping veggies and flipping chicken better than Gordon Ramsay (just kidding Gordon), I can pop over to the table for 5 minutes and join her, then go back to work without her getting bored waiting for me and becoming destructive.

We bond as I let her “teach” me how to work a puzzle and how to think of strategies to finish the puzzle faster. She’s so clever and smart ( says every mom), but seriously, seeing her develop these skills is a beautiful thing. I’m happy to be able to be apart of it.

What I’m saying is BrickMates STEM puzzles are convenient in all the right ways. They are affordable, durable, develop crucial skills, and keep our kids entertained with or without us.

Your child learns every core skill by playing with one toy. Isn’t that the most convenient invention ever?! I go into more detail on how children learn through independent play with self-development, critical thinking, and so forth in this blog.

So, as they already have those bases covered through independent play, when you add adults and children to the mix, they learn even more.

Appropriate social skills with different types of people are developed. It’s a great group activity. Children learn when to lead, they learn it’s okay to ask for help, and they work together by sharing ideas, helping others, and how to communicate effectively. Leaving tantrums and poor coping mechanisms behind.

 

Puzzles are a classic “toy” that never goes out of style for parents or kids. Now that we’ve added STEM certification to BrickMates puzzles, it’s a no brainer why they help elevate our kids to the next level! 

Share this blog on social media so other parents can learn more about STEM and #STEAMeducation, don’t forget to tag @brickmates!