Tag Archives: Community Play

LEGO® Duplo vs Juniors Block Sets Review

toddler playing with building blocksWe will now do a series of reviews within LEGO®  building blocks for kids. Starting based on age groups  LEGO® Duplo and LEGO® Juniors building blocks for kids will be the first one.

The Duplo Block set:

These sets are designed for smaller children with less developed hand to eye coordination and less grip strength (ages 6 months to 3 years). LEGO DUPLO My First Deluxe Box of Fun 10580 Building ToyHere is where parents start opening the possibilities to our children about creativity and imagination.  We have watched not only our children but our grandchildren explore the colors and shapes, throw them, eat them and try and mimic us as we stack them.

Features:

Since the sets are for babies the sets contain:

  • much larger blocks than the usual LEGO®  blocks, which are more suitable for smaller hands and to reduce the danger of a choking hazard.
  • All of the blocks are brightly colored to help keep the child’s interest and some are inscribed with numbers to aid in learning numbers and counting.
  • Some sets contain minifigures of boys, girls, police, circus animals, farm animals and a host of whimsical creatures.
  • All of your child’s favorite characters from Disney® movies are included in the various sets.

Check out this video for a detailed review of the new 2015 LEGO® Duplo Sofia’s Royal Castle Disney Princess Sofia the First 10595 Castillo Real Princesse Amber


All in all, the LEGO® Duplo sets offer a great choice for your child’s first building experience, teaching them about the outside world while keeping them safe at home.

LEGO® Juniors Building Sets:

LEGO® Juniors building block sets are the gateway sets to the wider LEGO® world. These are also targeted at younger children (ages 4 to 7 years) both boys and girls.                                                                                       LEGO Juniors 10672 Batman: Defend the Bat Cave                   

Features and Differences from the Duplo  block set:

  • This is the first series to the LEGO® world of building blocks
  • The blocks, mini-figures and other parts in Juniors sets are the same size as in the sets designed for older children.
  • The focus on these sets introduce the child to the Lego product and give them the necessary skills to play with the more complex sets in the future. All of this is accomplished through play.
  • The Junior sets come with very detailed instructions with lots of images so that the child will see each assembly step required.

Eventually the child will become confident with his or her skills and begin to tackle more complex sets and free their imagination and creativity.

Now check out this video for LEGO® Juniors Construction Set # 10667 to see what we mean:


Summary

While both these sets are designed with younger children in mind and have different target age groups they serve the same purpose.

That purpose is to familiarize the child with the LEGO® system of building block toys, while providing the best play experience possible and give them a means to be creative.

until we meet again…

Barb & Walt

The Benefits of Play at an Early Age

Benefits

Playing at  an early age with building blocks, children start to develop  grasping, and hand to eye coordination. toddler playing with building blocks Children will begin by placing one block upon another and  progress to larger and more complex structures as they grow more confident. Learning that a tower of blocks may topple without proper support helps children develop valuable spatial identification skills.The joy of success when I child builds his first tower Figuring out how pieces of a toy fit together, to build a bridge, a house or a car encourages rational thinking and planning and cooperation with playmates. Playing with construction toys is crucial to a child’s ever-developing cognitive and thinking skills.

Some of the benefits are:

  • The improvement of fine motor skill development by the act of reaching for and grasping the blocks and other components.
  • Other advantages are structure making and understanding of forms that work and those that don’t.
  • Also understanding of cause and effect, like the fact that what you build may fall down and why that happened.
  • They also come to realize that most of what they create, as the final product, rarely looks as it was intended in the beginning.
  • Playing with construction sets provides a natural way for children to learn about science and experiment with simple machines, such as inclined planes, pulleys, pendulums, levers and gears and of course gravity.
  • In addition, children who build with building block sets are exploring math concepts such as spatial relationships, shape recognition, comparing and measuring size and length.

Children who build with toy building block  or construction sets are exploring math concepts such as spatial relationships, shape recognition, comparing and measuring size and length, width and height.     Motor errors are as informative as successful actions. Research is reviewed on intentional actions, beginning with block play … A Critical Cognitive Skill by Rachel KeenDepartment of Psychology, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia 22904

Community Play starts to develop

Community play is important Teamwork, creativity, perseverance and problem-solving skills can also be enhanced through construction projects when they share the experience. Construction toys, of any kind, have many benefits for young children, in the long run. Building with a variety of components encourages play while  learning of early engineering skills (i.e. the bottom block goes first…).

Playing with age-appropriate toys promotes hand-eye coordination and course and fine motor development mist manufacturer will list the suggested age for their toys. Noting that the ultimate decision is up to the parents based on the cognitive growth of their child……” it seems reasonable for parents to ask if toys can provide their kids with meaningful educational experiences…” A guide for the science-minded – by Gwen Dewar

However,  time and time again we see children improve their socialization by playing and cooperating with other kids in their age group and adults.

Summary

Children, of all ages, will spend many happy hours, never knowing that they are learning so many things, that they will use, in the rest of their life. While building seemingly random structures they are allowing themselves to occupy time, relax and make noise.

This solves a lot of problems for younger kids who have issues because they are inarticulate and have difficulty communicating with others. Building is another way to communicate because kids often talk with themselves, at the toys or to others during play.

This video is amazing and shows how this group takes the simple building block and challenges the student to do amazing things. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did.

Building block toys teach the child self confidence and trust in their abilities, as well as, the boost it gives creativity and imagination. Kids ( young and old ) will enjoy and benefit for the addition of building blocks to their life.

In our next post we will speak of how building blocks help with rehabilitation.

Until we meet again!
Barb & Walt