I sing the praises of good old fashioned blocks often. They are the the foundation of natural toy fun in my opinion. Simple, sustainable, fun, and a window to creativity. Both of my two boys love our Marble Run but those are a little too sophisticated for my toddler. Another good set of no frills blocks that rate high on my natural toys list are CitiBlocs. They are simple enough for toddler play but appealing to my nine year old as well… especially if you have enough of them to make an entire city.
They also seem to be a top choice among schools so you can buy them in BIG sets. All kids need that block building experience. It teaches the concepts of design, balance, problem solving, cause and effect, and engineering to name a few. It also allows for free flow creativity. I know a young boy who loves Legos but simply cannot create on the fly… he has to have instructions. My son is the exact opposite though. When we buy Legos or blocks and there are instructions he tosses them aside and makes whatever is in his head. One of his favorite things to do is spend the better part of a day creating a whole city or a civilization and then walking me through me each design with detailed explanations of why he built the things he did and what their function is. It amazes me how creative he is and I think we have blocks to thanks for this in large part.
They are also great for helping very active kids focus. You just can’t get any more active and carefree than my two boys and yet blocks manage to settle them and get them to focus on a project.
CitiBlocs are a great intro for my younger son now who is still a little to young for Legos, Lincoln Logs, and Marble Runs. Years down the road when neither of my boys wants to play with blocks anymore they will be ready to pass on to another child… a time tested toy that will engage another generation.
Where to buy: GlammaToys & Amazon