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Peter Friedrich Catel, a merchant in Berlin, decided to publish a mail order catalog of ‘mathematical and physical cabinet of arts’ in 1790. In that catalog there were many wooden puzzles. And more than 225 years later people are still being puzzled and perplexed by wooden puzzles and brainteasers.
Many different types of puzzles really lend themselves to being made in wood. Aesthetically people enjoy the feel and colours of wood, especially when some sort of sculptural element is used in making the puzzle. From early examples in Catel’s catalog of the Small Devil’s Hoof, to the very high level Bill Cutler burrs made here at Mr Puzzle, wood has been the medium of choice for many puzzle makers creating interlocking burr puzzles. And many kids have made the famous three piece knot puzzle in woodworking class at school.
Wood and rope brainteasers are another category often seen in wood where the puzzler usually has to remove a wooden ball, or a metal ring, from the rope tied in complicated ways through the wooden base. Often ending up with a very knotty problem!
Dissection puzzles are usually made of wood too. Whether than be 3D like the Soma Cube type puzzle or 2D like the Tangram puzzle there are many examples of these puzzles in wood.
And puzzle boxes too of course! Japanese puzzle boxes with their very fine marquetry type woodwork decoration have been amazing puzzlers for generations. But we’re also now seeing less elaborate and complicated wooden puzzle boxes from China coming to the market. Great new ideas born out of functional boxes used to store documents and valuables.
Puzzlemakers have been creating puzzles and brainteasers out of wood for hundreds of years. And puzzlers have been collecting and enjoying wooden puzzles for just as long and look like continuing to do so for a long time yet.
Reasons You Should Buy Your Kids Wood Puzzle Games
Kids’ brains are fascinating things. They develop so quickly, and for much of their childhood, a kid’s brain is like a sponge soaking up lessons, experiences, and information. To help them develop physical and cognitive skills, we need to provide children with the right tools for learning. Puzzles are fantastic for kids of all ages, and they help them develop skills they’ll use their entire lives. Mr Puzzle stock wood puzzle games designed for children to have fun while simultaneously enhancing their physical and cognitive abilities. Here are a few reasons why you should invest in some wooden puzzle brain teaser games for your kids.
The Benefits Of Wood Puzzle Games For Your Kids
Wooden puzzle games offer a whole host of advantages to developing children. We’d narrowed the list of benefits down to a handful of key points.
- Problem-solving. These skills are developed by training the rational, logical side of our brain to work cooperatively with our creative brain. As children make mistakes and try new methods of solving wooden brain teasers, their problem-solving abilities will gradually improve.
- Understanding instructions and processes. As your child progresses through their wooden puzzle games, they’ll learn that they can take specific steps in a particular order to complete the task at hand. Puzzles will help them understand the role of instructions.
- Gross and fine motor skills. Depending on how old your child is, they could be in the process of mastering their motor skills. Larger block puzzles will help very young children develop their gross motor skills by asking them to place blocks in the right spot. Some of our more intricate wooden puzzle games will help kids practice their fine motor skills by encouraging them to twist things, slide things, and move smaller parts.
- Emotional regulation. It can be easy to get frustrated by puzzles. There are times when we’ve wanted to scream after working so hard on a puzzle, only to get nowhere. Doing wood puzzle games from a young age teaches children patience, and it teaches them to regulate their emotions, so they don’t fly off the handle.
- Self-esteem. There is no better feeling than accomplishing something all by yourself. Kids need to experience these feelings of achievement early on, so they develop motivation and drive to try new things on their own.
- Concentration. If your child has an attention span of around 30 seconds, sitting them down with wood brain teasers may be just the thing to improve their engagement. It will also help them improve their patience!
- Spatial awareness. Understanding how objects relate to one another and yourself is a crucial thing to learn in childhood. Puzzles are a surefire way of helping your kids develop those critical cognitive skills faster.
The Best Wood Puzzle Games For Each Age Group
If you’ve been scrolling the Mr Puzzle site wondering which puzzle is best for the little one in your life, we’ve narrowed down a few age groups and puzzles that should challenge their cognitive abilities in the best way.
- 2-3 years: Your toddler will begin to recognise and understand concepts like shapes, colours, numbers, time, and opposites. They’re ready to start problem-solving for themselves, so it’s the perfect time to get them their first puzzle. We’d recommend starting them off with the wooden geometric shapes and fractions puzzle.
- 3-5 years: Toddlers see leaps and bounds in their physical development as they learn to do things by themselves. They’ll begin to develop fine motor skills as they learn to hold items between their thumbs and first two fingers and they can start to follow simple instructions. We’d suggest this wooden 2D mosaic puzzle.
- 6-8 years: By this point in their lives, kids have been going through rapid cognitive development. Their language is developing by the day, and they’re becoming more independent. We’d suggest this mini-golf maze puzzle to help them tune their fine motor skills.
- 9-11 years: Kids at this age are beginning to develop longer attention spans, and they’re able to concentrate on one task for more extended periods. It’s an excellent opportunity to introduce them to the Soma cube.
- 12-15 years: As kids enter into adolescence, they develop the capacity for complex thought and complex problem-solving skills. They’ll likely be looking for a puzzle that will challenge them to think outside the box, so we recommend a wooden 3D puzzle such as the four blocks in a cube interlocking puzzle.
- 15 years+: Beyond 15 years of age, adolescents fine-tune their problem-solving skills by engaging in increasingly difficult problems and challenges. One of our deceptively difficult puzzles is a wooden shape puzzle. The 9 piece cat packing puzzle is much harder than it looks, and it will require your child’s attention, logic, and creativity.
How To Help Your Kids Without Giving Away The Solution
When you see your child struggling, it’s only natural to want to swoop in and help. However, the reward is much greater when kids can solve the problem for themselves. Those benefits such as self-esteem, concentration, emotional regulation only come from finishing things on their own. Here are a few ways you can help your kids solve their puzzle without giving the solution away.
- What is the problem? Asking children what they are struggling with allows them to articulate their frustration and better ask for help. Have them identify their problem and communicate it to you.
- Mitigate frustration. If your child is angry, confused, or upset, this is an opportunity to teach them how to calm themselves down. Practice breathing exercises and other coping mechanisms to help them build resilience. Encourage your kids to slow down and take their time solving the problem.
- Learn from mistakes. If your kid makes a mistake, encourage them to learn from it. Ask them why they think it didn’t work, how they’re going to do it differently, and applaud their efforts.
If You’re Looking For Wood Puzzle Games, Mr Puzzle Has You Covered
When you’re looking to purchase puzzles online, Mr Puzzle is your one-stop-shop. We’ve been designing and selling puzzles since 1992, and we had our online puzzle shop well before Google even existed. We’re renowned as Australia’s leading online puzzle store, and we’re proud to be able to offer puzzle-lovers across the nation with a wide variety of brain-teasing puzzles. At Mr Puzzle, you are guaranteed to receive high-quality puzzles, premium customer service, and unparalleled knowledge of all things puzzle-related. If you’re looking to purchase puzzles for yourself, for your kids, or a puzzle-lover in your life, don’t hesitate to drop by our online store and browse the range today!
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