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Kapla Blocks

STEAM skills targeted: construction, engineering, art
Recommended age: 3+

Kapla Blocks are probably the simplest toy on this whole site – they are plain wooden planks measuring 4.5 x 1 x 0.25 inches. Unlike other wooden building blocks there is no variation in shape and size and no colors or patterns (some colored versions are available but most Kapla Blocks come in plain unfinished pine). They do not slot together, contain magnets or any have any other fancy properties.

So what makes these blocks so great when there are so many other variations of building blocks available? Educators know that the simpler and more open-ended a toy is, the more creative play it will inspire. Complex electronic toys that flash and beep and only do one thing are often discarded quickly, whereas building blocks and other open ended toys can be played with for hours and encourage creative and imaginative play.

As Kapla blocks do not use magnets or connectors to fix together and nails or glue or not required, children will have to develop engineering and construction skills to figure out how to build structures using only gravity and balance to keep the whole thing from collapsing.

As there’s no variation in the sizes, Kapla blocks are available as simple boxes containing a different number of pieces. The original Kapla planks come as plain unfinished pine but you can buy additional boxes in 8 different colors for more building fun and art projects and also idea books with illustration books for various different art and construction projects.