Playing with puzzles is not a new phenomenon. Both children and adults have been doing that for ages. Puzzles like the jigsaw ones are really entertaining. In earlier days it was the wooden puzzles. Pictures were painted on pieces of wood and by means of a jigsaw the pieces used to be cut out. It was during 1760 that the first jigsaw puzzle was introduced commercially. The name of the man who created it was John Spilsbury. The puzzles for children created by him were actually maps. Young children learning geography were greatly benefited by these educational puzzles. Those puzzles helped the children learn about countries and regions.
Gradually modern jigsaw puzzles were made on a mass scale. Cardboard was used as a raw material to make these puzzles. Later on plastic and foam were used to make puzzles for children (in Danish puslespil til børn) These brightly colored puzzles are great for children to play and learn.
Since the pieces are large it is easy to manipulate them particularly by young children. Nowadays you have three dimensional wooden puzzles which are simple. The shapes that are used today are either that of an animal or a human being.
Children who play and learn (in Danish leg og lær) through puzzles develop faster. These educational tools aid children to improve their problem solving and motor skills. Since these are available in the shape of animals, humans and other interesting forms children learn a lot about them.
Not only children but adults too play with puzzles. It is a sort of brain teaser. Today you have complicated puzzles which were introduced after 1990. The brain has\ several functions and playing with puzzles help develop these functions. Puzzles help improve reasoning, logical analysis, numerical calculations and much more. Regarding the physical aspect these puzzles help improve hand-eye coordination. These even impart spatial awareness.
Puzzles are an integral part of the learning process. Children should be given access to puzzles from an early age. Since subject specific puzzles are available nowadays a child can get lot of valuable information from such puzzles. A lot of children are spatial learners and they learn better when they handle objects which are related to the subject that they are learning. Since puzzles also have images these are also beneficial for children who are visual learners. Problem solving can turn out to be a fun exercise with puzzles. When learning is fun children enjoy and develop interest in it. Later on it helps to develop career skills.
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