International Puzzle Day is almost here! This year we get to celebrate it on a Saturday. This Saturday!
When I think of puzzles, I think of my grandparents. They both loved puzzles.
Grandpa enjoyed working crossword puzzles, and his ability to complete them intrigued me. He would read a clue out loud and tell me the number of letters in the answer. And when I was too young to know the answer, he always made me feel as though I was helping him figure it all out.
Grandma always had a card table set up in their den with jigsaw puzzle on it. We were welcome to work on her puzzle any time we wanted.
I loved sitting down to work on her puzzles. And, while I enjoyed working on them, I had a bigger reason to sit down to work on them. It was the time with her. She would stop whatever she was doing to be with me. She was present.
There are many benefits of playing with puzzles in addition to sharing time with someone special.
Benefits for kids include:
- Cognitive skills development through spatial awareness
- Fine Motor development through manipulation, sorting, fitting
- Hand and Eye Coordination through trial and error
- Social interactions through cooperative play (taking turns, supporting each other when handling frustration, shared joy of finishing)
- Self-Esteem and Self-Confidence building through overcoming challenges and sense of achievement and pride
- Single goal to achieve through process, problem-solving, and reasoning skills
Today I’ll search for a jigsaw puzzle that reminds me of my grandfather and grandmother. I’ll set up our card table on Saturday and spread out the puzzle pieces. And just like my grandma, you are welcome to sit down and join me.