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10 of the best jigsaws and puzzles for children

We've tried and tested children's jigsaws and puzzles to bring you the best buys in a range of prices for ages 2 to 7 plus

best puzzles for kids

It’s great playing with noisy toys that do exciting things but it’s also good – and brilliant for fine-finger and logical thinking skills – to sit down to an old-school puzzle and have a go at piecing all the bits together.

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We’ve tested a whole heap of puzzles and jigsaws for children aged 2 to 7 or 8 years, and, with the help of our tester families, pulled together the best…

Here’s our pick of the best jigsaws and puzzles for toddlers, preschoolers and schoolchildren, as tested by kids and rated by parents

1. Usborne’s In the Jungle Puzzle Book & Jigsaw, £9.99

Age: 5+

What it is: A colourful 100+ piece jigsaw for a school-aged child with a jolly jungle theme. Comes with a 24-page picture puzzle book.

Why we love it: This is a really engaging puzzle: the illustrations are bright and clever, with funny or interesting things to spot, like a sloth wearing slippers or toucans with identical beaks. Our child testers felt nicely challenged by the number of pieces and really enjoyed reading the puzzle book, too. Edyta, mum of 5-year-old child tester Ayaan, said: “This is really entertaining and excellent value for money. My son loved it.”

Available from: Usborne, Amazon and Wordery.

2. Classic World Geometric Puzzle, £18.95

Age: 3+

What it is: A 28-piece collection of wooden geometric blocks in a variety of colours and shapes that can be arranged in different ways.

Why we love it: This is a simple and beautifully made puzzle toy that will also fascinate toddlers under 3 (as long as you carefully supervise the play with small parts). The blocks are smooth, chunky and colourful and our child testers’ parents loved that there is no set way to play with the them: you can place them – in loads of different ways – in the wooden base or stack them up like building blocks or line them up like dominoes.

Available from: Kidly and Hippy Chick

3. Orchard Toys Number Street Jigsaw Puzzle, £11

Age: 2+

What it is: A 20-piece toddler jigsaw where you order the houses by number and add the animals that match in colour and number on top. Come with a full-size poster.

Why we love it: The colours are vibrant and engaging and the sturdy pieces are lovely and big. Aimee, mum of our child tester Dexter, 2,  said: “I never knew that a child could gain so much from one puzzle! My son was able to identify the different animals, numbers and colours, as well as problem solve to figure out where the pieces went. When he’d done once, he went on to complete it a further 5 times! He finds something new to talk about and explore each time.”

Available from: John Lewis, Amazon and Orchard Toys

4. Schleich A Day at the Farm Puzzle, £10.49

Age: 4+

What it is: A 40-piece preschooler puzzle of a busy farmyard scene,. Comes with 2 farm animal figures.

Why we love it: We like just how much there is to spot in this jigsaw once it’s completed: that farmyard is a veritable hive of activity! Our child testers loved counting the cows and pigs and describing what the farmers are up to. And those animal figures are an awesome touch.

Available from: Amazon and ToyStreet

5. Milly & Flynn 3D Foam Giraffe Puzzle, £7.99

Age: 5+

What it is: A 17-piece, 15-step 3D puzzle of a giraffe which you make by pushing together precut foam pieces. Also available as a lion, elephant, crocodile and panda.

Why we love it: What we like about this little kit is that a 5 or 6-year-old could manage it all on their own: there aren’t too many pieces and the instructions are nice and clear. Our child testers felt very proud at having found each piece in the right order and followed the diagrams to fit them together. A great stocking filler or birthday-party gift.

Available from: Amazon

6. Trefl Baby Classic: Safari, £6.27

Age: 2+

What it is: A box of 4 animal-themed first puzzles, each made up of 2 to 5 pieces.

Why we love it: Our toddler testers were excited by nice bright pictures on these puzzles, and the pieces are nice and thick. A good price for a little set of puzzles that are perfectly pitched, difficulty-wise, for 2 year olds.

Available from: Amazon

7. Orchard Toys Big Dinosaurs Jigsaw Puzzle, £11

Age: 4+

What it is: A large (58cm x 40cm) 50-piece jigsaw puzzle, with curved sides, that depicts 8 different dinosaurs on a prehistoric background. The box has a carry handle and talking points for dino discussions on the back.

Why we love it: The pieces are colourful, good quality and an ideal size for little fingers to manage. After you’ve named and talked about all the different dinosaurs, there’s plenty of other detail in the picture to find and point out – our child tester was fascinated by the dino eggs in the foreground.

Available from: Orchard Toys, John Lewis and Selfridges

8. Tidlo ABC Chunky Puzzle, £18.99

tildo abc puzzle

Age: 3+

What it is: A chunky wooden board puzzle, with 26 removable upper-case wooden letters. Under each letter is a picture that matches the letter – an zebra for Z, for example..

Why we love it: It’s strong and well-made with nice small-fist-sized chunky letters that slot very satisfactorily into place. All our child testers’ parents were wowed by the quality of this puzzle. We do wish the letters were lower-case, though (as children often tend to learn these first in nursery and school).

Available from: Amazon and Mulberry Bush

9. Thomas Track Playset, £19.99

Thomas & Friends puzzle playset

Age: 3+

What it is: An 8 jumbo-piece puzzle that forms a train track for an (included) motorised Thomas the Tank Engine. The track pieces can be configured in up to 50 different ways. Requires 1 x AA battery (not included).

Why we love it: We like that it comes with instructions for 6 simple tracks to get you started – and, of course, the little Thomas train makes this so much more than a jigsaw. Ellie, mum to our child tester Aviana, 3, said, “Aviana loves how fast Thomas goes over the track she made. He sometimes derails but that is actually more fun as she has to chase after him!”

Available from: Amazon and Very

10. Smart Games Colour Code Brainteaser, £19.99

Age: 5+

What it is: A logic puzzle the challenges players to recreate 100 patterns (1 at a time!) given in a booklet by building up layers of transparent tiles with coloured shapes on. Box includes holder, shape tiles and booklet with challenges and solutions.

Why we love it: This puzzle is simple in theory but in practice it can be decidedly tricky – even for grownups! Every challenge involves carefully choosing tiles based on the shape, colour, order and orientation. There are 5 levels of difficulty so younger or newer players can start gently before building up to some tougher challenges.

Available from: BrightMinds and Smart Toys and Games

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