The 13 Best Construction and Building Block Toys of 2022

Stack, build, and play with these durable and fun building blocks for all ages

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Considered a classic toy by experts, parents, and teachers, construction and building block toys unlock many skills for kids. From improving brain development to enhancing language growth, building blocks can help a child exercise a range of developmental skills.Plus, blocks are fun solo activity or with friends and offer an important alternative to screen time.

Reviewed & Approved

The Magna Tiles Magna-Tiles 32-Piece Solid Colors Set are plastic flat tiles that have magnets inside them so they can be used in both 2D and 3D structures. For younger children, we recommend the Blockaroo Magnetic Foam Building Blocks.

"By building with physical objects, children will learn spatial skills such as 'on top,' 'under,' and 'next to.' They will learn to problem solve how things fit together," Heather Shafi, MD, a New Jersey-based pediatrician, says. When it comes to choosing the right blocks for a child, age can be the deciding factor, but you also want them to be durable so they last longer. We carefully considered age recommendations, design, material, toy safety, and value when reviewing products.

Here are the best construction and building block toys for your family.

Magna Tiles Magna-Tiles 32-Piece Solid Colors Set

Solid Color Magna-Tiles

Courtesy of Walmart

The Magna Tiles 32-Piece Solid Colors Set ranks high on our list because these award-winning STEM blocks are fun for the entire family. Uniquely designed, these plastic flat tiles have magnets inside them so they can be used in both 2D and 3D structures. While expensive, they are long-lasting, sturdy, hold their value, and can be combined with loads of other sets. Parents and kids alike will appreciate the custom Magna Tiles featuring The Beatles, the Grinch, and other well-known icons.

Age Recommendation: 3 years old+ | Number of Pieces: 110; Sets vary | Materials: Plastic

Blockaroo Magnetic Foam Building Blocks

Blockaroo Magnetic Foam Building Blocks

Amazon

Fun for younger kids, these super-soft foam building blocks have magnets inside of them, so it’s very easy for them to build amazing structures. Clicking together like magic, kids will appreciate the multi-sensory experience as the blocks lock together and rotate 360 degrees. Even better, the foam is waterproof, so these blocks can join your kiddo in the bathtub for an extra fun bath. These blocks are dishwasher safe, mold-resistant, and very durable.

Age Recommendation: 18 months old+ | Number of Pieces: 17 pieces; sets vary | Materials: Foam

LEGO Classic Large Creative Brick Box

4.7
LEGO Classic Large Creative Brick Box

Courtesy of Amazon

Welcome to the world of LEGO! If your kids are LEGO-curious, this creative brick box is a perfect starter set for beginners or younger kids. With nearly 800 bricks that all fit into the included storage box, this colorful set includes base plates, tires, windows, doors, and tons of colorful bricks of all sizes.

The joy of LEGO is that it keeps kids of all ages busy for years to come. This open-ended set is a wonderful way to encourage creativity without kids needing to build the blocks a certain way to comply with LEGO set instructions. Of course, these bricks are all compatible with other LEGO sets.

Age Recommendation: 4 years old+ | Number of Pieces: 790; Sets vary | Materials: Plastic

Mega Bloks First Builders Bag

4.9
Mega Bloks First Builders Bag

Courtesy of Amazon

Perfectly sized for little hands, babies, toddlers, and young kids will enjoy building, stacking, and knocking down their very own Mega Blok creations. Parents love that these oversized blocks are easy to put together. The set comes with its own storage bag, making for a fun and easy clean-up process.

The oversized blocks are safe for young kids; they’re made to be oversized so you won’t accidentally step on them and they can’t fit in a child’s mouth.

Age Recommendation: 12 months old+ | Number of Pieces: 80 | Materials: Plastic

Melissa & Doug 100-Piece Wooden Block Set

Melissa & Doug 100-Piece Wooden Block Set

Courtesy of Amazon

Durable and safe, these wood blocks come in four different colors and nine shapes, so there’s plenty of variety for building, stacking, and playing. Though they are made of solid wood, the blocks are lightweight, have rounded edges, and feature a smooth painted finish that won’t splinter.

The set packs into a cardboard box with a plastic handle. The only complaint among families is that while they do fit, the cardboard may not hold up forever, so a long-term storage alternative is helpful.

Age Recommendation: 3 years old+ | Number of Pieces: 100 | Materials: Wood

Plus Plus 240 Piece Basic Mix

Plus Plus 240 Piece Basic Mix

Courtesy of Plus Plus

One little block can open up a world of possibility. Made to create in both 2D and 3D, these interlocking blocks combine engineering and art for a whole lot of fun. Perfect for life on the go, these 240 piece sets come in a clear plastic tube for easy storage and toting along wherever you go.

Along with the blocks, the set includes an idea guide booklet to spark imagination and challenge kids to create. PLUS PLUS blocks combine with other sets and baseboards to make bigger and bolder builds.

Age Recommendation: 5 years old+ | Number of Pieces: 240; sets vary | Materials: Plastic

Magblock Magnetic Blocks

Magblock Magnetic Blocks

Courtesy of Magblock

Kids will enjoy the process of learning while playing with these innovative plastic blocks that feature enclosed magnets. The smooth surface and rounded edges are safe for little hands, and the hard plastic makes this choice quite durable. Build anything your imagination can think of, especially since the set includes window frames, gates, doors, triangles, rectangles, and so much more.

Age Recommendation: 3 years old+ | Number of Pieces: 70 | Materials: Plastic

PicassoTiles 100 Piece Set

PicassoTiles 100 Piece Set

Amazon

Fun and affordable, the main selling point of these blocks are they promote frustration-free building. If you’ve lived with kids who get very upset when their tower falls down, give Picasso Tiles a try!

Made with a bristle shape, the blocks are easy to connect and disconnect. Picasso Tiles stay connected when other blocks relying just on balance wouldn’t hold. With a wide range of colors and block shapes, this STEM toy will promote creative thinking, hand-eye coordination, and problem-solving skills.

Age Recommendation: 3 years old+ | Number of Pieces: 120 | Materials: Plastic

HABA Wooden Building Blocks

HABA Wooden Building Blocks

HABA Wooden Building Blocks

Uniquely shaped, this set from family-run HABA is just as much fun for adults as it is for kids. Part building, part tangrams, these blocks are fun for open-ended building and creative challenges. Crafted in Germany, the blocks also come with a booklet that showcases a wide range of 2D and 3D designs you can make with the blocks.

Besides being fun, these minimalistic blocks look attractive stacked on a coffee table or desk.

Age Recommendation: 3 years old+ | Number of Pieces: 21 | Materials: Beech wood

Maple Landmark My Best Blocks

My Best Blocks
Photo Courtesy of Amazon.com

With a variety of shapes and sizes, you can start fostering your child's creativity around building as young as 1 year old with this set of wooden blocks. The solid hardwood maple blocks are American made and sanded to a smooth finish so they're safe for even the smallest hands to play with. These well-crafted blocks will last for years and grow with them.

Age Recommendation: 1 year old+ | Number of Piecess: 104 | Materials: Maple wood

BRIO Builder 34587 Builder Construction Set

Brio Builder Starter Set
Photo Courtesy of Amazon.com

Sometimes laying blocks on top of one another just isn't enough to satisfy the construction urge in some children. Especially the more mechanically minded kids! It contains 136 pieces, which include a variety of wooden planks and blocks as well as plastic wrenches, pliers, and other pieces used to connect the pieces together in as many ways as a child can imagine

Age Recommendation: 3 years old+ | Number of Pieces: 136 | Materials: Wood and plastic

Magz Super 300 Magnetic Building Set

Magz Magnetic Construction Sets
Photo Courtesy of Amazon.com

The Magz construction sets use magnets to hold the pieces together making them great for kids who may get frustrated with other sets that require them to snap pieces together. This set of 300 pieces includes 176 magnetized rods and 136 steel balls, which allows your child to make countless different configurations.

The rod-and-ball design also makes them great for practicing shapes in three dimensions. But due to the size, they do pose a choking hazard.

Age Recommendation: 3 years old+ | Number of Pieces: 300 | Materials: Alloy steel

LEGO DUPLO All-in-One-Box-of-Fun Building Kit

LEGO Ultimate Building Set
Photo Courtesy of Amazon.com

Legos are a time-tested favorite, but if your child isn't old enough for the small Lego shapes we recommend getting the started with this set of Duplo blocks. They'll love the bright colors and the classic Lego stackability in shapes that are better suited for their tiny hands. Plus, the included characters (and dog!) will keep their imagination running. With 65 pieces, we also like that this set of blocks comes with a bin that makes clean up and storage easy.

Age Recommendation: 18 months old+ | Number of Pieces: 65 | Materials: Plastic

Final Verdict

Our top pick is the Magna-Tiles 32-Piece Solid Colors Set (view at Electronic Express). It's fun for both kids and adults and can build both 2D and 3D structures. If your kids are on the younger side and you’re looking for a block set that’s just as fun to play with as it is to clean up, MegaBloks (view at Amazon) should be at the top of your list.

If your school-age kids are just getting into LEGO, the LEGO Classic Large Creative Brick Box (view at Amazon) provides plenty of blocks for tons of builds and helps promote open-ended building and creative thinking.

What to Look for in Building Sets and Blocks

Age-Appropriateness

Select blocks that are safe and age-appropriate for your child. The smaller the block, the older the child should be before they play with them. “Between one and two years old, children should gain the motor skills and dexterity to be able to stack blocks and sort them,” says pediatrician Heather Shafi

Talk with your doctor about milestones for your child and then choose blocks (and other toys) that can help develop or advance their skills. Playing with building blocks can teach kids cause and effect and strengthen gross motor, dexterity, and fine motor skills and enhance sensory play abilities. For younger toddlers and babies, large blocks that are lightweight will allow them to explore stacking, carrying, and creating. Older, school-aged kids would likely enjoy smaller blocks with detailed designs that allow them to bring their imagination to life.

Not only are blocks fun, but according to Dr. Shafi, they have long-term benefits like “building hand strength that will help them with learning to write one day.” Just remember, "using only screen games for building can hinder their dexterity," she adds.

Durability

Select blocks that are safe and long-lasting. They should be easy to clean, since younger kids may still put some blocks in their mouths. Many plastic blocks are dishwasher-safe and others can be wiped down with baby wipes or washed with a gentle cleanser. 

When thinking about durability, also consider the age of the child that will be playing with the blocks. Older kids may be able to manage the toys and keep them in tip-top shape versus a toddler who might be rougher with blocks.

Entertainment Value

Like the rest of their toys, blocks that are fun will get played with, which will only benefit your child. Again, age comes into play when considering the entertainment value. Younger kids may find tiny LEGO-style blocks to be too difficult to use and get bored with them. On the other hand, school-aged kids may not find jumbo blocks to be really fun or entertaining. According to Dr. Shafi “by building with physical objects, children will learn spatial skills such as 'on top,' 'under,' and 'next to.' They will learn to problem solve how things fit together."

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What skills do kids learn from building blocks?

    Blocks are wonderful ways for your children to learn about colors, shapes, counting, size, weight, and more. They are also great for developing fine motor skills, which require dexterity and hand-eye coordination, and even gross motor skills such as jumping, swinging, or kicking, with larger building block sets.

  • What are the benefits of building toys?

    Creativity and imagination are two benefits of building blocks, but there are many more. Your child can learn simple math and geometry, as well as gain confidence and a sense of pride from their creations. Problem-solving skills are also a benefit of building toys.

  • What is an appropriate age for building blocks?

    There are building blocks for all ages and sizes. It’s most important to look at the pieces to see if there are any potential choking hazards for younger children. For example, traditional LEGO sets in the standard size include many small pieces that are not appropriate for small children. In that case, going with a LEGO set made from larger blocks would be appropriate. Check each set’s manufacturer’s recommended age range to see if it’s developmentally appropriate and safe for your child.

Why Trust Verywell Family

Maya Polton is a former marketing manager and current freelance writer who covers food, home, and parenting. She’s also the mom of a 10-year-old son, a 7-year-old son, and a 3-year old daughter. She appreciates blocks that come with an easy storage solution. While her crew loves to play with blocks, they don’t always love cleaning up blocks, so any way to make that process easier is a bonus in her book.

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  1. Toy buying tips for babies & young children: aap report explained. HealthyChildren.org.