Thursday, March 28, 2013

B is for Blocks

I think that blocks are a valuable investment for all families. Simple, safe blocks can be purchased for babies and more complicated can be purchased for the child in all of us! Pickles and Buddy love to play with blocks.  They are 9 and 10 years old and they still love to build.  We make towers, bridges, walls, buildings, etc.  They can exercise their engineering, math and science skills with the variety of blocks that we provide for them.  Beware, if your children are like mine, there may be block creations up in your living areas for days!

What are some of the brain benefits of playing with blocks?

Higher thinking math skills
Spatial skills
Problem solving
Cooperative play

What are some possible areas of benefit for a child with autism?

Social skills
Tactile stimulation
Visual stimulation
Cooperative play
Check out this Lego Therapy site

A few of our favorite blocks

good old fashioned wooden blocks, my mother in law found us a large set on Craigslist
Wooden Blocks

Legos  I prefer an assortment of Legos for more imaginative building, but my kids also like the modular sets like Lego City and Lego Friends

Bristle blocks--great tactile blocks

Blik blok--higher thinking skills, problem solving, natural material

Magna tiles not quite blocks, but they are a building toy and kids can experiment with magnetism

Water blocks--great for littler ones, but my kids still like to stick them in their creations

Cardboard blocks  We love this set.  They have become many things--restaurant, car, plane, stuffed animal house, cabin, Great Wall of China, etc.

Haba blocks sets--We have had the Little Amsterdam set for many years, the box is falling apart, but the blocks are holding up!

Wedgits  fun building toy, thinking skills, spatial skills

Kapla plank blocks  These blocks are wonderful!  We first played with them in a children's science museum and I had to add them to our collection.  The possibilities are really endless with these blocks.  Practice with gravity and balance. Natural pine material.

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