When you’re raising a toddler or young child, it’s important to fill their toy collection with a mixture of both entertaining and educational playthings. Some toys, like jigsaw puzzles, offer kids the best of both worlds: They’re super colorful in order to catch and keep your little one’s attention, and are made with chunky pieces so little hands can easily grasp and assemble them without any assistance from mom or dad. So shut off the TV, hide your iPad and watch as they develop their fine motor skills and try to maneuver the pieces, making sense of what goes where.
The best jigsaw puzzles aren’t just a compilation of parts that fit together to make a pretty picture; they teach your little one about problem solving, expand their knowledge of shapes and colors, and strengthen their hand-eye coordination. From Melissa & Doug’s breathtaking solar system floor puzzle to SainSmart Jr.’s Tetris-inspired set, here are our top picks for the best jigsaw puzzles on Amazon.
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1. Melissa & Doug Solar System Floor Puzzle
Melissa & Doug’s Solar System Floor Puzzle is so vibrantly colored and busy, your child will be captivated for hours by the illuminated stars and planets that practically jump off the jigsaw puzzle. They’ll have to pay close attention to the activity in order to figure out where each of the 48 pieces fit properly. Perfect for kids between the ages of 3 and 6 years old, the puzzle’s chunky cardboard pieces promote the development of your child’s hand-eye coordination, so it’s just as educational as it is beautiful.
2. CHAFIN Puzzles Set for Preschoolers
Beginner jigsaw puzzles truly are the best because there’s very little clean up on your end, plus you get to watch your little one light up once they’ve figured out which piece goes where, literally piecing everything together in their minds. This CHAFIN set is comprised of four puzzles featuring dinosaur, safari, farm and space themes. The cartoonish images are bright, colorful and pack a ton of details into the finished masterpiece. Designed for children ages 3 to 6 years old, the set makes honing hand-eye coordination, fine-motor skills and problem-solving abilities fun.
3. SainSmart Jr. Tetris Puzzle
Puzzles are so much more than what they appear to be on the surface: pretty pictures that can take hours, sometimes days to piece together. Especially for children, puzzles can serve as educational tools, and SainSmart Jr.’s Tetris Puzzle has taken what might feel like a mindless learning tactic to the next level.
Suitable for children ages 2 to 8 years old, this innovative play off the popular tile-matching video game features 40 colorful building blocks made from beechwood and decorated with natural, non-toxic maple paints. The hope is that, by maneuvering the blocks to fit in a variety of ways, your child will fine-tune their hand-eye coordination, color-shape recognition and problem solving skills.