Wrangling the family away from screens and devices can be a nearly impossible task, but it's crucial to their mental and physical health that they do! A jigsaw puzzle requires their full attention and therein lies the clincher. Toddlers, tweens and stressed out parents alike should once again turn to the chilled out pastime of puzzling.
Starting a jigsaw puzzle and keeping it on a table in the living area or other well-inhabited room is an irresistible invitation to the whole family to join in whenever there are moments in the day to sit down and focus. It's a strategy that we as parents can use to start a conversation while working toward a common goal. The goal? To slowly and meticulously work through the puzzle in order to reach a satisfying ending.
And on that note, stew on this... puzzles promote patience too!
The very first jigsaw puzzle was a map of the world that had been attached to a piece of wood from which each country was then cut out. The 1767 mapmaker who created this first-ever puzzle could not possibly have guessed the centuries of joy his creation would bring, nor the endless list of benefits that would come with it! Puzzling is enjoyable, educational and helpful in your child’s development.
Puzzles are a like "brain gym" in which the left and right sides of the brain are exercised simultaneously. Memory and critical thinking skills are developed because your child uses these skills to solve a problem - either the puzzle piece fits or it does not! The best part? They can't cheat a puzzle! (And they must remember the shape of the piece that doesn't fit for when it WILL fit later)
Working with puzzles is especially beneficial when our kids are young as it helps develop hand-eye coordination and gross and fine motor skills. This leads to better handwriting and typing skills later on. Hooray to that!