The developmental benefits of blocks are endless! Remember: smaller blocks (like LEGO) are easier for older children, as they require greater fine motor control to manage. But in general play with blocks allows for:
- Cognitive growth as children make plans to build structures, solve problems that may arise in construction, move through trial and error thought processes, make judgements on size, shape, and number relationships
- A boost of imaginary and symbolic play skills as children assign meaning and representation to their creations (e.g., This is a castle with a mean dragon blowing fire!)
- Social skill growth. Building block structures in pairs or small groups affords children opportunities to be better turn-takers, compromisers, and joint problem-solvers.
- Fine motor development of the hands as children try to pick-up, turn around, and use the appropriate degree of force to connect blocks
- Language practice. Encourage your children to describe to you in detail the structures they have made and how they made them. This allows for development of descriptive vocabulary (size, shape, color) and procedural narratives (first, then, next, last)
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