Come this time next month I will have a school aged child; I can hardly believe it! So over the summer holidays, we have been doing various things to get ready. Getting feet measured, buying school shoes. Getting uniform and practicing doing up buttons on his shirt (bless he’ll have a shirt and tie to wear)! I have also been trying to do some fun but educational things with Max. One of those things is using puzzles. He was kindly sent one from Wentworth Puzzles to review over summer, and I couldn’t think of a more perfect person to review it – they are one of his favourite things.
Max has always had a pretty good attention span and has had a long focus for things like puzzles for quite a while. So it is something that he really enjoys. Even if you’re child doesn’t have the longest attention span, playing with puzzles is really important for them. Important for us as adults, even! Puzzles can benefit is in the following ways:
I’m sure you will have heard of this buzz word doing the rounds over the past couple of years. But being able to destress and take a little time out can help to reduce the chances of developing a mental illness. If you have an outlet, whatever that may be, it could help. For children and adults, colouring books can help with that. Puzzles can have the same effect. You put your focus onto something else and achieve something by the end of it.
Achievement Boosts Confidence
There is nothing better than taking your time to do something and getting something good out at the end of it. That is the result with completing a puzzle. You have spent some time on it, and overcome the difficulty of completing it. It can be so satisfying to finish the puzzle and have had achieved something. It can boost confidence and self esteem.
When we do achieve, it actually has a positive impact on our health. Chemicals in our brain help us to be happier when we have achieved something. This same chemical can help lower blood pressure and reduce stress levels. Whilst this might not be a problem for younger children, it is good to get them in the routine of doing something like a puzzle. Then they are used to having a realising outlet to chill, relax and destress.
If the puzzle has a calming picture, or even a educational one like the one we have been using, it gets them to calm down and to focus. Our children will need to think about shapes as well as colours, so they are learning as they go too.
Max really likes wooden puzzles, as they are much easier to put together. They are sturdier than their card counterparts too. The world map 50 piece puzzle he has been doing was just the right level of difficulty for him. He liked that there are different shaped pieces in it that represent monuments or landmarks around the world. So we were able to talk about what they were and where about in the world they are. At £25 he puzzle is a little on the expensive side. It is good quality and well made, though. It would work well as a gift, rather than an everyday ‘toy’, I think.
Do your little ones love puzzles?