Students exercise their left and right sides of their brain at the same time while working on jigsaw puzzles. The left side is logical and linear while the right side is creative and intuitive. Jigsaw puzzles are like a mental workout that improves problem solving and attention spans. They also connect brain cells and improve mental speed, especially with short term memory. Since our adolescents are on the cusp of driving a car, jigsaw puzzles are excellent for visual-spatial reasoning. (Get those puzzles out!)
Jigsaw puzzles are a type of meditation and stress reliever, too. Focusing on fitting pieces, colors, and shapes together in order to create a picture eliminates everyday pressures and replaces the stress with peace, while lowering blood pressure and heart rate. Puzzles are also good for some alone time, a break from work and this digital world. (Good for everyone!)
Jigsaw puzzles connect humans--parents and their children especially. This is a great way to attract your adolescent, your social newborn, or your new young adult, to sit with you, to focus/meditate and start a conversation. Working towards a common goal improves relationships and the ability to collaborate.