|Manufacturer: Maple Landmark Woodcraft
Recommended Age: 3 years to 6 years
Retail Price: $14.00
On the Web: www.maplelandmark.com
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Introducing Maple Landmark Woodcraft’s newest line of puzzles, the shaped jigsaw puzzle. The Train Engine puzzle has 12 large interlocking pieces cut from 1/8″ hardwood plywood. Each puzzle measures about 11″ high and 12″ long. Brightly colored and detailed designs are printed right on the wood so the images don’t scratch off with lots and lots of play. Each puzzle comes shrink wrapped with a drawstring pouch for easy storage.
Adorable shaped puzzles from Maple Landmark Woodcraft are certainly easy to use – once kids get used to working on puzzles that are a little bit different than what they are used to! Remember, this is a shaped puzzle, in the actual shape of a train, with no board to set the pieces in, so it takes a little practice and play to get used to working on a puzzle like this!
Ahhh….what a happy relief….unlike flimsy dollar-store cardboard puzzles there are absolutely no durability concerns with these wooden puzzles. Kids can assemble, disassemble and do it all over again to their heart’s content without any worry of these pieces breaking down. And – yes, if you’ve read our reviews before, we are always worried about missing pieces – and this is where we address that. Unlike other puzzles that store in a crummy cardboard box, the Shaped Train Engine Puzzle stores in an included drawstring storage bag!
This was a tricky category for us to rate and here’s why: Our Moms and Dads loved the wood puzzle – it brought us all back to days past….however, the kids weren’t quite as taken with it as we were. Remember, kids today are used to the brightest colors, flashing lights and character themed everything. Don’t worry, once kids got to work, they loved working with the wooden puzzles (they are time-tested toys for a reason), it just wasn’t their first choice.
Well, once it’s built, kids can disassemble and rebuild…but like all puzzles, there is only so much functionality. We recommend having a number of puzzles on hand so when your little ones sit down to work on them, they’ll have plenty to move through to keep things interesting and let the play last longer.
Remember when we mentioned those dollar-store cardboard puzzles? Well, while they aren’t our favorite, they sure are inexpensive! Compared to a puzzle like this that costs $14, we do understand why many parents would go for the (way) less expensive options. On the other hand, this is the kind of puzzle that will last a lifetime, that can be handed down from your kids to your grand-kids someday. Believe me, members of the review team have given their own children wooden puzzles that their parents held onto from their own childhood!
Well…puzzles aren’t exactly original…but we do love the throwback feel of these wooden puzzles.
When it comes to a toy that gets your kids brain moving and works on their fine motor skills at the same time – you can’t go wrong with a wooden puzzle. The Shaped Train Engine Puzzle from Maple Landmark Woodcraft is on the pricey side, but it will last a lifetime. The design in fantastic, and in a world of iPads and Wii games, you’ll be amazed at how much fun and feelings of accomplishment your kids will have when they work on and complete puzzles. Get your kids brains in gear with these awesome puzzles from Maple Landmark Woodcraft!