Building sets and blocks
Building sets and blocks are a fun and creative way for children and adults of all ages to play together. For very young children, building blocks introduce colors and shapes while helping kids to develop fine motor skills and problem-solving skills. Older children use complex construction sets as a creative outlet. We stock a huge selection of construction sets that provide hours of entertainment and help children build a brighter future.
From a very young age, many children develop a fascination with stacking blocks and arranging them into structures. There are many types of building blocks available, and even small sets create a wealth of opportunities for children to get creative with their constructions.
- Oversized blocks: A child's first building blocks are usually wooden or plastic cubes decorated with numbers, letters or bright pictures. Playing with these blocks promotes motor skills, hand-eye coordination and pattern recognition. As children grow, they tend to move on to simple construction bricks. These bricks are still oversized for easy manipulation by little hands, and they have bright colors to hold the child's interest, but they also click together to allow for more robust and varied structures.
- Construction bricks: There are several brands of construction bricks, and some of them are compatible with each other. The bricks are available in hundreds of colors and shapes, and they click together securely, making it possible for imaginative kids to create all kinds of wild designs. Many construction bricks come in sets with instructions for creating a certain item, such as a car, a plane or a busy city scene; however, it's also possible to purchase boxes of bricks for use in custom building projects.
- Licensed kits: The manufacturers of big-brand building bricks often acquire licenses associated with popular intellectual properties, such as superheroes, cartoon characters or the hottest new movies at the box office. The licenses allow the creation of themed kits that recreate scenes, vehicles or iconic locations from movies and television shows. Many of these kits include small character figures, which are popular with collectors. Be aware that licensed kits are usually only available for a limited time, due to the license expiring or interest in the associated intellectual property decreasing.
Other construction toys
Building blocks are just the beginning. There are countless building toys that offer children the opportunity to create.
- Construction toys: Construction toys take many different forms. Some kits include rods and connectors for making skeletal structures, while others comprise flexible plastic or rubber pieces that stick together like Velcro. Most of the sets come with simple instructions for a selection of builds, which also serve as inspiration to encourage children to come up with their own designs.
- Engineering toys: Some construction systems offer a hands-on experience for budding mechanics and engineers. The sets comprise metal components that fix together with screws and bolts to make functional toys such as cars with working steering or mechanical claws that really grip. Kits usually have instructions for several different builds, but there's plenty of scope for children to invent their own models. Because the components are usually metal, and tightening the bolts requires good fine motor skills, these sets are often for older children, although younger children may be able to get involved with the correct supervision.
- Robotic kits: Robotic kits fall under the category of STEM-based learning toys, which seek to inspire a love for science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The kits usually contain all of the components to make one specific type of robot, such as a remote-controlled mechanical arm, a solar-powered robot or a battery-powered walking robot with programmable commands. Even the most basic kits cover quite complex concepts, so they're better for older children with a love of science.
How to buy building sets
When shopping for construction toys, one of the most important considerations is whether the toys are age-appropriate for the recipient. Bricks come in various sizes, and in kits of varying complexities, so manufacturers always specify a recommended age. It's essential to check the age on the packaging to ensure young children don't have access to small pieces or sets that are too difficult. We make it easy to find the right toys by grouping products by age range, but you also have the option to browse by leading brands to find the hottest toys right now.