As moms, we’re always trying to find new activities to keep our little ones busy. Because, if the kids are busy, we can actually get some stuff done, right? 

Even though we spend so much time researching and selecting the right toys for our children, they still seem to be more interested in playing with random items they find around the house. But often, the novelty of that item fades quickly.

So, considering that there’s always something else we need to get to, like a pile of dishes in the sink, or a million unread emails, we can all agree that it’s great to have an activity or two on hand that will keep our kiddos entertained for a while. 

A great puzzle will not only keep your children busy, they’ll even learn something in the process. 

When you’re looking for an activity to keep your little ones busy, toddler puzzles are a great option. Puzzles are a great buy because they’re relatively inexpensive, they’re pretty easy to tote around, and best of all, they’re educational! 

There are so many benefits for your kiddos when they start playing with puzzles, and they will be having so much fun they won’t even realize they’re learning. 

Benefits of Toddler Puzzles

When you’re looking for some new activities for your toddler, puzzles are a great option because they have so many developmental benefits. 

Toddler puzzles are great for developing cognitive skills. Puzzles come in a variety of themes, and they help your kiddos understand basic concepts such as colors and numbers. 

Puzzles also help toddlers learn to recognize patterns and make connections between the things they learn and the world around them. 

Even the simplest of puzzles require a child to think of the proper placement for each piece, and a strategy for how to get it there. This helps develop a child’s critical thinking and problem-solving skills. 

Puzzles are great for developing social skills as well because they’re the kind of activity kids of all ages can work on together. This is an excellent toy option for families with multiples.

They require children to communicate and collaborate with one another while they both work towards a singular goal of completing the puzzle. Whether your child is one year old or four years old, there is a puzzle out there they will love.     

Best Puzzles for 1-Year-Olds

When it comes to younger children, it’s great to start them out with a very simple puzzle. At one year old, your child is just starting to learn about different shapes, colors, and letters. Still, they don’t necessarily have the skills yet to distinguish between them. 

Hape First Shapes Toddler Wooden Learning Puzzle
Hape First Shapes Toddler Wooden Learning Puzzle

A basic shape puzzle like this is a great one to start with to help your toddler develop their fine motor skills and help them learn their shapes. As they improve their ability to pick up and set down each piece, they will eventually get to a point where they can put each shape in its proper place. 

TOP BRIGHT Puzzles Educational Toys
TOP BRIGHT Puzzles Educational Toys

Another great puzzle for one-year-olds is this number puzzle which comes with 10 pieces and is designed to help young children learn the numbers 1 through 10.   

Best Puzzles for 2-Year-Olds

At 2 years old, your toddler is probably always on the move and eager to learn new things. Every toddler learns at a different pace, but as children continue to deepen their understanding of numbers, letters, and shapes, toddler puzzles with a few more pieces can help challenge them and strengthen their problem-solving skills.

SKYFIELD Wooden Animal Jigsaw Puzzles for Toddlers
SKYFIELD Wooden Animal Jigsaw Puzzles for Toddlers

As far as animal puzzles go, this one is a favorite for sure, and I love the different colors and patterns on each animal. The colors are so vibrant, and they’re small enough to take with you in the car. 

Melissa & Doug Farm Chunky Puzzle
Melissa & Doug Farm Chunky Puzzle

Melissa & Doug makes another really great animal puzzle that your toddler will go crazy for. It also gives you a great opportunity to work with them on animal sounds, and I’m sure your toddler will love to practice their animal sounds as they pick up each farm animal on this puzzle. 

Best Puzzles for 3-Year-Olds

Melissa & Doug Traffic Jam Floor Puzzle

By 3 years old, your toddler is probably ready to start putting together jigsaw puzzles with a few more pieces! This floor puzzle by Melissa & Doug is great for siblings to work on together. The puzzle is 24 pieces and 2 x 3 feet long, which allows for collaboration between siblings without them having to fight over who gets to put it together. 

Melissa & Doug Disney Classics Alphabet Wooden Peg Puzzle
Melissa & Doug Disney Classics Alphabet Wooden Peg Puzzle

For something a little more educational, this fun puzzle bundle comes with an alphabet puzzle, a number puzzle, and a shape puzzle. If you’re looking for something a little more simple in design, Toy to Enjoy sells a puzzle bundle with just a number puzzle and an alphabet puzzle. 

Toy To Enjoy Alphabet Puzzles - Wooden Upper Case Letter and Number Learning Board Toy
Toy To Enjoy Alphabet Puzzles – Wooden Upper Case Letter and Number Learning Board Toy

These types of toddler puzzles could be used from the time your kiddos are learning their numbers to the time they are learning to write the alphabet on their own. Wooden puzzles are great to buy because they’re sturdy, and they last for a really long time.    

Best Puzzles for 4-Year-Olds

If you have one or more older children, at this point you may be wondering if there’s a puzzle out there for them. Puzzles are not only great for siblings to play together, they can even be something you do as a family where everyone joins in. 

Wooden Jigsaw Puzzles for Kids
Wooden Jigsaw Puzzles for Kids

Jigsaw puzzles are great for a family game night, and they challenge your kids in a way that other toys don’t. This bundle on Amazon comes with three jigsaw puzzles and is great for any kids 4 through 8 years old. 

Ravensburger - Disney Princess Heartsong 60 Piece
Ravensburger – Disney Princess Heartsong 60 Piece

Ravensburger makes some great character jigsaw puzzles like this Disney Princess one. They sell them in different sizes and levels of difficulty so you can find the puzzle that is best suited for your toddler. 

There are so many great puzzles out there if you’re looking to buy one for your toddler. They’re not only a great activity to keep your children entertained, but puzzles are something your kids can work on together. 

We know how hard it is as a mom to keep your children busy while you check all those chores off your to-do list, and your kids can only watch Frozen so many times.

If you’re looking for an activity your kids can work on independently or with their siblings, puzzles are a great way to go. They’re inexpensive, easy to store, and they certainly don’t hurt as much as Legos if you find yourself stepping on the pieces!   

Interested in more articles regarding skill development? Check out our education section.