For most kids, the preschool years (between 3 and 4 years) welcome your kiddo’s first social circle. Here’s an ice-breaker idea to get them jiving in harmony — building and stacking blocks the entire class can play with!
Your kiddo loves playing with building blocks alone. In Pre-K, it’s more space for building and more friends to build with. Time to up work those language, communication, and social skills.
“What kind of structure are we making today, buddy?”
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Best Blocks for Preschool & Preschool-Aged Kiddos
- (01) Melissa & Doug Primary Colors Wooden Building Blocks Set (100 Piece)
- (02) Bannor Toys “Wood & Silicone” Innovative Hardwood and Grippy Blocks
- (03) SainSmart Jr. Preschool-Size Large Wooden ABC Cube Blocks with Mesh Bag (40 Piece)
- (04) Gi Gi BLOK XXL “Full-Sized Preschool Playhouse” Lego-ish Interlocking Cardboard Blocks
- (05) Everwood Friends “Made in USA” Natural Wood Unit Blocks Preschool Building Set
- (06) ECR4Kids “Pre-K SoftZone” Giant Foam Building Blocks with Sanitary Vinyl Lining
- (07) Guidecraft “Clear View / Treasure Blocks” Transparent Observation Sensory Blocks
- (08) SumBlox “3D Number Building Blocks” Hands-On Preschool Numerals Stacking Kit
- (09) Amazon Basics Over-Sized Hollow Wooden Building Blocks for Daycare & Preschool
- (10) Lincoln Logs “Collector’s Edition / Extended Original” 327 Piece Wood Log Cabin Building Set
- (11) Bankers Box at Play Red, Blue, Yellow Large + Medium Cardboard Building Blocks (40 Pack)
- (12) Everwood Friends “Little Town Blocks” Top Quality Solid Maple City Blockset
- (13) Puddletown Playworks Preschool Playhouse Modular Birchwood Builder Boards
- (14) Dimokl Wooden Toys “Naturally Different Shaped” Non-Square Waldorf Building Blocks
- (15) Schylling “Alphabet Big Blocks” Classic Colors Jumbo-Sized Wood Blocks (48 Count Group Set)
(01) Melissa & Doug Primary Colors Wooden Building Blocks Set (100 Piece)
Wooden blocks are a precious and functional resource for children from 4 years old. This set of 100 pieces, with 4 colors and 9 different geometric shapes, can give free rein to the imagination of the smallest of the house. The wood of the blocks is solid, the blocks are non-toxic, and the colors are very bright.
Children can start by simply stacking one on top of the other to form towers, and then move on to more complex creations. Recognize that there are pieces that fit together to form distinct shapes. This set develops practical and imaginative play.
(02) Bannor Toys “Wood & Silicone” Innovative Hardwood and Grippy Blocks
As babies over 12 months of age develop motor skills, they need a fun and safe way to learn about touch, stacking, balance, building and color. This 24-piece set of wooden and silicone square blocks is the perfect complement. Its design is ideal for little hands, its combination of solid wood in three shades of cherry, walnut and maple, in conjunction with the silicone blocks with a hole in the center and very bright colors, will allow them to stack and form simple towers.
Encourage the construction of houses through the window-like holes, and when the time comes, make very tall towers. Did I mention — Bannor Toys blocks are handmade.
(03) SainSmart Jr. Preschool-Size Large Wooden ABC Cube Blocks with Mesh Bag (40 Piece)
A set of 40 blocks of natural pine wood, suitable for children from 18 months. This set is worth it, because it can grow with baby and print difficulty in the activities you perform as you understand the game. On one side of the blocks are carved the letters of the alphabet in uppercase, on the other side the lowercase letters, on the other side the numbers and on the other side the first mathematical symbols to perform simple mathematical operations and some animals.
From stacking, to recognizing letters, adding and telling stories, this set of wooden blocks has many resources to work with the little ones of the house.
Includes a storage bag and each block measures 1.8 inches.
(04) Gi Gi BLOK XXL “Full-Sized Preschool Playhouse” Lego-ish Interlocking Cardboard Blocks
When children understand that with blocks you can build practically anything, you can introduce them to this XXL size cardboard block set that will allow them to build a fort or a life-size castle. Playing at creating your own house will never be so much fun.
This set includes 203 pieces of a light and resistant cardboard that is very respectful of the environment, and a blanket that will serve as a roof for our children’s creations. It is especially recommended for children from 3 years old and can support a maximum weight of 24 kg. Each block has a gear system that allows the child to have more stability when assembling their walls, besides being super light, to be able to put them together in a corner and store them without much effort.
(05) Everwood Friends “Made in USA” Natural Wood Unit Blocks Preschool Building Set
If you are looking for solid natural maple wood blocks, large in size, unpainted and with a very silky finish, this set is perfect. It has a total of 48 pieces with different geometric shapes, the longest block measures 11 inches and the smallest 1/3 inch.
They are handmade in the USA, and because of its presentation, this set has a long durability for children. Includes a wooden platform to build different shapes of monuments when children become more aware of the figures, and in addition, you can choose between the basic set or add more pieces, to have a large collection and form a big city with all the pieces. Suitable for children from 2 years and up.
(06) ECR4Kids “Pre-K SoftZone” Giant Foam Building Blocks with Sanitary Vinyl Lining
Foam blocks generate a lot of fun for children — in primary colors and secondary colors. Because of their soft texture, they can be stacked, ridden, made into circuits, develop psychomotor skills, tunnels and bridges. It is undoubtedly a great resource for big time stacking and building.
This set includes 7 pieces: 1 large, 2 medium, and 4 small with primary colors. Its size is 8, 16 and 4 inches, respectively, and its texture is a soft non-toxic synthetic leather coating, which can be introduced to babies from 9 months old. This type of blocks grows with babies, and their use can be extended up to 4 years old.
These classroom-friendly foam blocks come in contemporary colors too — more neutral tones than the primary colors option. Regarding the quantity of blocks, sizes and quality of the foam with certificates of guarantee of non-toxicity for children is the same. It also has 7 foam blocks to develop gross motor skills and dexterity in young children.
(07) Guidecraft “Clear View / Treasure Blocks” Transparent Observation Sensory Blocks
This beautiful and creative set of wooden blocks is suitable for children between 3 to 10 years old, because they come with sustainable and transparent wooden edge inside (they are usually called treasure blocks), to be able to introduce different objects by children, and observe the blocks with the elements inside. It is not only a stacking game, but it encourages exploration, attention to detail about the object that is introduced inside, and the ability to change the theme of each block, which is totally unique.
For example, the child can be asked to put in each one: marbles, leaves from nature, small toys, twigs… It comes in a set with 8 pieces and different sizes of blocks. This set is usually presented to play or explore, on a children’s table or desk.
(08) SumBlox “3D Number Building Blocks” Hands-On Preschool Numerals Stacking Kit
This ingenious set of solid wood number blocks, allows children to visually demonstrate the conceptualization of numbers and their respective values. The design of the numbers in shape and size allow them to order the numbers in an increasing order, visualizing in staircase a smaller size (1) to an increasing size until reaching the number 10. It also allows to teach the first strokes of the sum, or the relationship of small numbers to obtain a larger result.
For example, if the number 3 is placed in a column and another 3 on top, and we place next to it the number 6 which is twice as big, the child can “see” that the 6 is obtained by adding twice 3. It is a resource that is widely used in the Montessori methodology, suitable from 3 years old.
The set contains 38 mini building blocks and guide cards, to facilitate the understanding of the game for children and parents.
(09) Amazon Basics Over-Sized Hollow Wooden Building Blocks for Daycare & Preschool
This Amazon set of natural wood blocks is a great resource for children, because each block inside is hollow, so they are lightweight and of varied shapes that allows them to build ramps or running tracks. It includes 20 pieces, and each one is rounded at the edges to avoid injuries and preserves the natural color of the wood. It is a non-toxic resource, because the wood is not treated.
It promotes cognitive development and imaginative thinking in children from 3 years old.
Each block is large in size, so with 20 pieces they can recreate a great racing circuit scenario at home.
(10) Lincoln Logs “Collector’s Edition / Extended Original” 327 Piece Wood Log Cabin Building Set
If your kids like log cabins, this 327-piece set to recreate cabins and make a practical living game can be very useful and fun. It is made of natural wood and its design is just like the logs that we see in the classic forest houses in the mountains.
Create an entire village in the best traditional style. Included are pieces to create roofs, facades, logs and chimneys. These log pieces have slits to connect them together and are easy to hold and stack, perfect for little hands. It is a traditional American toy that has been passed down through 4 generations of families.
(11) Bankers Box at Play Red, Blue, Yellow Large + Medium Cardboard Building Blocks (40 Pack)
For children who like to have a fort or their own castle at home, this great set can be a great ally for games and creativity development. They are lightweight cardboard blocks of large size, which come in 3 colors (yellow, blue and red) and allow you to stack them to create houses, walls, castles, bridges or forts. Imagination is the limit.
The material of the block is a very resistant cardboard that can support a weight of up to 150 pounds. They come with 40 pieces and have a lead-free certification that allows greater safety in the manipulation of children. This set is recommended for children 3 years old and up.
(12) Everwood Friends “Little Town Blocks” Top Quality Solid Maple City Blockset
If you are looking for block sets that form neighborhoods and skyscrapers in mini wooden format, these sets are ideal. They combine the simplicity of natural wood with the aesthetic shapes to create beautiful constructions. You can even decorate the houses with standard children’s crayons.
Depending on the set you choose, expect 4 or 5 pieces — all made of solid sustainable maple wood and 100% handmade. Each block measures 1-3/8″ and these building blocks are suitable for babies from 18 months and up. An advantage of this brand is that they work the wood very well, and to the touch it is extremely soft.
(13) Puddletown Playworks Preschool Playhouse Modular Birchwood Builder Boards
Building scale model houses is something kids love to do. With this set of 100 handmade building boards made from certified birch wood, children can build everything from houses to small barns. It encourages cooperative work and imagination. Each wooden plank has grooves to fit over the next to form the structure, and is 1/2″ thick.
This game can be assembled both outdoors and indoors because the wood withstands both climates. Ideal game to assemble among several children and practice problem solving.
(14) Dimokl Wooden Toys “Naturally Different Shaped” Non-Square Waldorf Building Blocks
If you like the Waldorf or Montessori methodology, this set of natural wood blocks belongs to both ideological currents. No piece is the same as the previous one, which makes this building set unique. Everything is handmade with natural wood and rounded edges to avoid injuries to the little ones.
They come in a cloth bag for storage, and the idea is that children can stack, create balance and equilibrium between the pieces, and form complete patterns with abstract shapes.
(15) Schylling “Alphabet Big Blocks” Classic Colors Jumbo-Sized Wood Blocks (48 Count Group Set)
A set of 48 classic wooden blocks with the letters of the alphabet in capital letters and vibrant colors that can be suitable for children between 19 months and 5 years. The uppercase letters allow easy visualization for children as they begin to recognize letters and form words. The size of each block is 1.75 inches, and these 4-sided letter blocks make it easier for children to visualize words.
The set comes in a wooden box for storage and is widely used in child care schools as well as for personal use at home with young children. While children are young they are used as stacking blocks and then difficulty is printed. Natural wood and non-toxic paint for safe use by children.
What do building blocks teach preschoolers?
One of the entertainments that most captivate children are the games with building blocks, because through them they can elaborate novel creations, defy gravity by stacking pieces, make large towers of cubes and best of all, knock everything down and start again. But, in addition to allowing them to have a great time, the constructions have great benefits for both babies and older children.
Among other benefits, building pieces allow children to develop motor, cognitive and sensory skills, as well as emotional and social skills.
Experts at the University of Washington conducted research to find out how beneficial it can be for a child to play with building blocks. The results of the study were surprising, showing that children who play “stacking blocks” develop language more quickly than those who do not use them. The key to this game is the stimulation of children’s reasoning, precursor abilities of thinking and language, among others.
Parents of Preschoolers – What you should know
Building blocks are key toys that parents should know and have available at home so that our children can develop multiple skills. Playing with our children since they are babies, with this type of toy, will benefit them with vocabulary, gravity, balance, geometry… Building has to do with size, shape, weight and leverage, and as our child works it out, their building and block play will become more and more complex.
Between the first and second year of life, building blocks should be large, to get them started in the construction stage. Stack one on top of the other, make small towers and knock them down. From the age of 3, a more complex area is developed that encourages fine motor skills, logical thinking and the perception of symbolic play or a particular role. At this stage, blocks with numbers, different shapes, blocks with letters, with a range of colors are introduced. From the age of four onwards, children can manipulate smaller blocks, follow simple instructions and make their own creations, even very tall building towers.
By the time children reach the age of 5, they are able to make spectacular works with these building blocks, they understand much better and can follow slightly more complex instructions. The mini figures become their great passions and they are able to perfectly imitate race tracks, farms, cities, fire stations, among others. That is why blocks become one of their favorite games.
Preschool Teachers – What you should know
When children play with their classmates with the building blocks, they develop cooperation, help and collaboration. These are fundamental values that will enable them to become better people and more empathetic to others.
Building blocks are excellent tools that teachers can use to teach children the importance of keeping spaces clean and orderly. As well as the consequences of chaos generated by disorder, where they can lose their pieces or not find an available space to play.
By creating in them the habit of order and collecting the blocks, they will forge habits and practices that are indispensable throughout life.
Building blocks in a preschool classroom can be classified according to the age of the children and the skills to be developed with them at each stage. For example, for children between the ages of 2 and 3, the goal with blocks should be to help the child become more organized, encourage symbolic play, and increase manual dexterity. Here, large wooden blocks are a good choice.
When children are between 4 and 5 years old, building blocks in the classroom should be used to stimulate motor, intellectual, cognitive and emotional development, also to introduce children to accept certain rules that must be followed depending on what they are going to build and to allow them to make more complex constructions, thanks to the possibility of manipulating smaller pieces.
Here, you can work with small blocks, of different roles, to develop fine motor skills and a sense of logic. You can have different options within the class, and according to the interest of each one, present one model or another.