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Keep Your Little Ones Entertained for Hours With the Best Building Toys
Last updated: 9 Nov 2023
From legos to those old wooden construction blocks, building toys have been a staple in kids’ toy boxes for ages. These toys help a child’s developing brain by sharpening a range of problem-solving and creative skills. They also teach your kids spatial skills like differentiating between ‘over,’ ‘under,’ and, ‘beside’ by learning how things fit together. On top of these huge benefits, they can also keep kids entertained for hours.
In modern times, building toys have the additional benefit of helping to cut down on children’s screen time. Playing around with some building toys is way better than being stuck to devices all day! Nowadays the market for building toys is pretty concentrated, which means there are plenty of worthwhile options to choose from. In this guide, we’ve put together a list of some of our favorite building toys available online in 2023.
According to studies, childhood play — especially associated with construction and building toys — can have a large impact on shaping a kid’s spatial skills. This plays an influential role in future fields like science and engineering. Pair those findings with the tons of fun that comes with this activity, and investing in a high-quality set becomes a no-brainer for any parent. If that’s not enough to convince you, keep in mind that it’ll also cut down your kid’s screen time saving them from the potential dangers of too much screen time.
Of course, not all building block sets share the same type of user experience, learning opportunities, and overall benefits. As a parent, you should do your research to ensure the set you purchase is age-appropriate, safe to use, well-designed, durable, and most importantly, fun to play with. Let’s go over all these key factors in a bit more detail.
Materials and Safety
In kids’ construction toy sets, material quality and safety go hand in hand. That’s because some plastic-built options could potentially contain harmful chemicals like phthalates, BPA, lead, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), and more.
In general, exposing kids to plastic blocks with one or more of these components can pose health and safety risks. Unless you can verify that the plastic set you’re purchasing is free from all of the above, you’re better off purchasing safer toys that are made out of eco-friendly materials like wood or stainless steel like the Veatree Building Toy listed above.
Your building toys also need to be age-appropriate. For instance, a 5-year-old playing with blocks meant for 8-year-olds may find things too challenging, and subsequently, feel demotivated to continue playing.
On the other hand, blocks made for 5-year-olds might seem too easy to older children which means it wouldn’t be fun after just a day or two. This could also lead to problems.
Instead, choose blocks that are designed for the precise age range of your child. As a general rule of thumb, the smaller the block, the older the age range that it’s meant for.
Between one to two years of age, the goal with building blocks should be to help develop basic motor skills and dexterity in children that allow them to stack and sort blocks.
Toddlers and babies, on the other hand, should play with large yet lightweight blocks to sharpen their sensory skills, exploring activities like carrying, stacking, creating, and balancing.
School-aged kids are old enough to play with blocks with design details, opening doors for imagination and creativity.
You’d be surprised how long children can play with building blocks without getting bored. We’re talking months and even years! That’s why it’s important to invest in sets that are built to last.
Age even comes into play with durability. For toddlers, you need the most resilient blocks out there because they’re more likely to be rougher with their toys. School-aged kids are (usually) more civilized in their play which is why their blocks can get away with being just a little more fragile.
Easy to Clean
If there’s one thing that all kids are universally good at, it’s the ability to make a mess. That’s why the blocks you purchase should be easy to clean. You’d be doing yourself a favor if you purchase sets that are dishwasher-safe or ones that can be cleaned with nothing but a wet wipe.
Lastly, don’t forget that these toys should be fun. Think about it, all those sensory, spatial, and motor skills won’t even start to develop if your child doesn’t even play with the set in the first place, right?
High-Quality Building Toy To Buy Your Kids in 2023
The Tubelox Ultimate Kids STEM Building Toys can unleash boundless creativity and imagination in your children. This innovative building set empowers kids to embark on an exciting journey of exploration and construction. With these toys, the only limit is their own creativity. It comes with 220 pieces per set, giving children plenty of options when it comes to constructing structures.
This building set not only nurtures the problem-solving skills of children but also supports their weight, adding a whole new dimension to the concept of play. You can elevate your children’s playtime experience by giving them this building set where engineering meets fun. The set has plenty of versatile pieces that can be combined in ways that reflect their unique vision. Due to its durability, entertainment value, and stability, this kit is the top choice on our list of building toys for kids.
The Soyee Building Toy set is a massive collection that’s large enough to keep any child aged three and up busy for hours on end (kids under three should have extra supervision). It consists of 102 pieces in different shapes, sizes, and colors. No piece is purely plastic made as they’re all magnetic for easy building. The plastic used is also toxin-free, while each piece features a well-rounded design to avoid injuries.
Each of the pieces is colorful yet translucent, giving your structures a unique and catchy look as light passes through them. You also get a storage bag to store your box, 100+ pieces, and booklet in for safekeeping. It’s a complete one-stop-shop package for fun and learning for your toddler.
The 3 Bees & Me Building Toy are a great way for kids, babies, and toddlers to safely learn about stacking, sorting, and building. This set comes with 40 extra large blocks made from safe, water-based paint, which is safe even for your younger children. The assorted rainbow colors also help with color recognition and sorting. More than just large blocks, the set is designed to help with the development of fine motor skills through stacking activities.
The wooden blocks are made of natural pine wood and have a smooth surface to make handling easy. They are also designed to be durable and sturdy enough to last for years in order to provide hours of fun at home or on the go. This set is perfect for any toddler looking to learn more about balancing, as they can use their imagination to create different structures and designs. The extra-large size also makes it safe for children of all ages. Kids can learn about color recognition and sorting while boosting their creativity in the process.
The National Geographic Epic Fort Building Kit provides an innovative and engaging way for children to explore their creativity through indoor fort building. This 225-piece set of bendable poles and Flex-Tech hubs are made with premium quality materials that make it easy to construct interesting structures. With 12 included clips, kids can easily fasten a sheet or blanket (not included) to their creation for the full fort experience!
The instructional building guide helps kids learn the basics of connecting pieces and provides step-by-step instructions for building a pyramid and an airplane. This allows children to build with confidence before trying their own designs, ensuring that this fun activity will grow with them as they get older. Kids can let their imaginations run wild as they create forts that are nothing less than epic! These creative toys from National Geographic allow kids to reinforce basic STEM concepts as they engage in creative play.
The Brain Flakes Building Toy set comes with a whopping 500 pieces, which is the highest quantity out of all other options on this list. It’s meant for children of age five and above and consists of discs that easily click together. They offer tons of flexibility in terms of what you can build with them. Whether it’s a tree, a ball, or a car, your child can essentially build anything they can imagine. Plus, the 500-piece quantity allows you to construct lots of different structures.
If your little one somehow manages to exhaust their imagination, this set comes with an additional booklet that comes with plenty of building ideas to keep the kids busy. The pieces are all plastic, but they’ve intentionally made them child-safe since they’re free of BPA, phthalates, heavy metals, and lead.
As far as the material quality is concerned, it doesn’t get much higher quality than this Veatree Building Toy. It features 206 magnetic pieces that are made out of reliable stainless steel. This means you neither have to worry about any sustainability issues, nor any risks involved with the use of BPAs, phthalates, PVC, or lead. With the ability to create fun and colorful 3D shapes, this set is also great for improving your kid’s spatial thinking, problem-solving, symbolic thinking, and much more.
Stainless steel toys are obviously way more durable than their wooden and plastic counterparts. In fact, these pieces are nearly impossible to break by accident, which means your children could end up holding onto the toy set forever as a souvenir of their good old childhood days.
Next up, we have the Lincoln Logs Building Toy. It’s the only wooden option available on this list, which automatically earns it the “most eco-friendly” award. It’s a great option for instilling a sustainability-focused mindset in your young ones at an early age, which is more important than ever for our planet’s well-being and preservation for future generations. It’s not just any wood either. This set is made out of high-quality maple wood to help it last for many years to come.
Being wooden, these toys will naturally exude a retro vibe that may even remind you of your own childhood. It has 111 pieces to play with – some of them being pre-designed for the roof, chimney, porch, fences, bonfire, and bonfire seats. Your child will enjoy getting to make a whole miniature cozy setting with this set.
Highly sustainable and eco-friendly
Features durable maple wood with premium finishing
Lastly, we’ve got the PicassoTiles Building Toy set. Just like the Soyee building toy listed at the top, this one also has magnet tiles with plastic pieces. We love how the shape on these blocks offers simple and easy connectivity, which means your children will be in for frustration-free building and hours of fun! They’ll also gain a strong sense of counting, sorting, and distinguishing colors thanks to the bright and catchy shades on these 120 pieces. Despite being plastic, the blocks are non-toxic and child-safe.
With more than 20 innovative designs to construct, this building toy has limitless longevity and will help keep your three-year-olds and up engaged as they grow. This set is also a great way for your child to bond with family and friends as they created new and exciting projects.
A: Construction play — also referred to as manipulative or constructive play — involves a child having to manipulate or move objects around to create something new. It’s entertaining and has a wide range of proven benefits for your child’s growth and learning. Lego and sand play are prime examples of this.
Q: Are building toys good for my kid?
A: Yes, building toys require children to use skills like planning, cutting, assembling, stacking, molding, and balancing — all used in conjunction to create a new structure. This activity has can improve a child’s concentration, motor skills, dexterity, spatial awareness, problem-solving skills, shape recognition, and more.
Q: Can building toys enhance social skills in my kids?
A: Yes, they can. Many building toy sets can only be completed by two or more people, in which case your kid(s) would have to work with their siblings or friends to overcome challenges, create difficult structures, and solve problems as a team along the way — all of which are excellent ways of sharpening social skills.
Q: Should I buy wooden or plastic building toys?
A: If you’re on a tight budget, plastic might be the better option. Wooden alternatives are more durable, eco-friendly, and also safer as they don’t contain any potentially harmful chemicals like phthalates, PVC, BPA, etc.
The Mighty Moms Reviews Team’s product reviews and in-depth guides are here to help you tackle motherhood and everything that comes along with it. The content is created by The Mighty Moms Reviews Team. Mighty Moms’ editorial staff is not involved. Mighty Moms is reader-supported: When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.