Building Blocks


Building blocks or bricks are typically made of wood, plastic, or foam in various shapes (cube, cylinder, arch, etc.) and colours that are used as construction toys.

Block building is the start of structures that include symmetry, patterns and balance.

Building blocks represent the irregularly shaped and sized letters of the alphabet.

Block building offers learners the opportunity to learn sequence and language skills as they discuss what they are building and what the blocks represent.


What is the purpose of Neuro Dynamix Building Blocks?

Neuro Dynamix Building Blocks incidentally teach learners the different aspects of objects such as size and shape when they compare, match and place objects in a specific order. Building blocks enable a learner to take a non-threatening step towards learning the symbols of language, mathematics and abstract concepts.

Neuro Dynamix Building Blocks offer multiple open-ended opportunities to develop analytical thinking skills and creative problem solving skills while the learner’s hands and eyes work with the shapes deciding how they can fit together.

Many learners who experience difficulties with reading and spelling still need to develop their visual perception, which includes:

  • Analysis
  • Synthesis
  • Foreground/background
  • Discrimination
  • Form constancy
  • Sequencing
  • Memory and closure.


Visual perception is important to tell letter and numbers apart, to recognise words and patterns and to remember a visual sequence before writing and reading make sense. Because the muscles of the eyes take nearly seven years to mature sufficiently to move across a page and to look up at the board and down at their book, the eye muscles need a lot of playful practice.

Block building offers learners a concrete visual-spatial experience that contributes towards emergent writing and reading.

Building blocks offer learners a non-threatening step towards writing and reading.

The blocks must consistently be to the left of the learner to encourage working from left to right.


Warm up with Mind Moves before you introduce the Neuro Dynamix Building Blocks:


Mind Moves Hand Massage
Firmly massage the learner’s hand by applying pressure to the muscles between the bones of the hand to relax the hand from wrist to fingers. Apply pressure to each finger from the base of the finger to the nail. Spread the palm of the hand wide open and hold it for eight seconds. Repeat with the other hand. This move improves muscle tone, proprioception, pencil grip, fine motor control and speech.
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Visual workout
The learner has to keep his head straight and look at one thumb, held at elbow distance from the eyes. He then moves the thumb to the left (at nose level), and then slowly to the right, crossing the visual midline. He first has to do this with the eyes closed, imagining the position of the thumb. He then opens the eyes and checks whether the eyes and thumb are in the same position. Repeat this movement five times and then repeat it five times with the eyes open. The learner must now repeat this exercise with the thumb held up and eyes turned up into a visual position (without turning the head), first with his eyes closed and then with his eyes open. He then repeats the exercise with the thumb and eyes down into a kinaesthetic position, first closed and then open. Rub the hands together briskly and place the warm palms over the eyes to relax them. This move stimulates easy transition between visual, auditory and kinaesthetic learning. It promotes eye-hand coordination and crossing the lateral midline.
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Suggested activities for the Neuro Dynamix Building Blocks:

  • Place the block to the left of the learner sitting at a table. Count the blocks, by picking up a block on the left and placing it to the right of the learner without passing the block from one hand to another. Encourage the learner to alternate the hand that picks up a block on the left and places it on the right of their body.
  • Use a blindfold and match, sort and group the Neuro Dynamix Building Blocks according to shape
  • While still blindfolded touch and name the shapes.
  • Add the blocks from the Neuro Dynamix Shape and Number Board and Visual Motor Board to the building blocks. Blindfold the learner. Now match, sort and group the blocks according to shape.
  • Use your phone and time how long it takes the learner to match, sort and group the blocks according to shape without a blindfold.
  • Use your phone and time how long it takes the learner to match, sort and group the blocks according to shape with a blindfold.
  • Encourage the learner to improve their time.
  • Match, sort and group the blocks according to size. As there is more than one answer it teaches estimation and decision making.
  • Match, sort and group the blocks according to size while blindfolded. These two groupings may differ, discuss why? Open ended questions stimulate critical thinking skills.
  • Use the blocks to add and subtract numbers irrespective of the size or shape of the blocks. The Neuro Dynamix Building Blocks provide the learner with a concrete experience to learn focus and logical reasoning.
  • Compare and divide the Neuro Dynamix Building Blocks into two groups with the identical blocks in each group. Ask the learner to build any construction with the blocks in the group on the left. When done ask the learner to replicate the grouping while constantly looking from left to right. The continuous movement of the head to look from left to right strengthens vestibular function.
  • Use a static and working clock to set a time limit to the activity.

    Set the static clock five minutes ahead of the current time. Hang both clocks above eye level. This allows the learner to take five minutes to complete the activity. They need to look up and compare the clocks and stop when they look the same. Encourage the learner to beat the clock, while building a construction to his left and replicating it on the right.

  • Still using the same two groups now construct a building with 5 blocks to the left of the learner. Use the Neuro Dynamix Hula Hoop Stand and Mouse Pad Board to place a divider between the construction and the second group of blocks on the right. Ask the learner to look at the blocks and memorise the design. Replicate the design on the right without peeping to remember the sequence. As soon as the learner succeeds, ask the learner if they would like to raise the number of blocks by two or three blocks on each side of the divider. The two groups of blocks must have the same number, shape and size blocks. Indicate the number of blocks that the learner replicated correctly on your INTERVENTION GUIDE along with the date as evidence of progress.
  • Select any 5 blocks from each group. The five blocks in each group must have the same shape and be the same size. Use a clipboard and hang it above eye level.

    Place one group of 5 blocks in a sequence on the ledge of the clipboard. Ask the learner to look up at the sequence that you have placed on the ledge, memorise the sequence and replicate the sequence with the second group of 5 identical blocks on the desk in front of the learner. A learner may not look at your sequence a second time. If they can’t remember or make a mistake change the sequence of the blocks. . They need to look at that sequence to remember what they see to develop their visual memory, sequencing and closure. If 5 blocks pose too much of a challenge, start with 3 blocks. Success breeds success, allow the learner to taste success and then add another block to each group. Remember the blocks in each group must be identical.

  • Once a learner can replicate the sequence without looking up to check, increase the number of blocks in each group. The learner must assess their efforts after every attempt to teach them self-management skills.
  • Encourage the learner to continue to increase the number of blocks in a sequence until he can remember a sequence of ten blocks. The example must always be presented above the level of the learner’s nose to activate the seeing part in the brain (called the occipital lobes). The occipital lobe on the left tends to focus on the detail (phonics), while the occipital lobe on the right pays more attention to the shape or pattern of the word (gestalt or whole word).
  • The learner can also do this activity without help and place the sequence of blocks on the ledge themselves. The continuous movement of the head in looking up and down strengthens vestibular function and exercises the different eye muscles needed for writing and reading.

Continue to repeat the posture rhyme to encourage the learner to self-correct their posture.

Looking from left to right stimulates the left to right reading direction.

Looking up and down stimulates looking from the board to the desk.


What skills relate to Neuro Dynamix Building Blocks?

  1. Imagination

Through block play, learners are free to follow their own ideas as they embark on a voyage of discovery or share in the development of their friends’ creations.

  1. Self-expression

Learners can express themselves through their play, creations and discoveries, a form of communication that’s particularly valuable for bilingual or non-verbal learners.

  1. Problem-solving

Blocks offer a great platform to develop problem-solving and reasoning skills. This can be deliberate, with learners consciously working to develop a solution, or as a natural consequence of play, as they learn first-hand what works and what doesn’t work.

  1. Mathematics

Due to the many shapes, sizes and colours on offer, blocks offer ample opportunity for learners to practise the important math skills of measurement, number, symmetry, balance and estimation. By comparing shapes and sizes, creating patterns or providing measuring and weighing tools, we can extend play and exploration.

  1. Physical development

Block play promotes the development of spatial awareness and develops hand-eye coordination as learners reach for, lift, move and build with blocks, strengthening their fingers, hands and arms.

  1. Creativity

Blocks are loose parts, meaning learners are free to combine and recombine them in countless ways. Practitioners can add alternative resources such as dough, small world characters or paint and pencils to further extend opportunities for creativity.

  1. Science

Through the exploration of cause and effect and experimentation, learners can develop their problem-solving skills, test hypotheses and practise scientific reasoning. Blocks help them to become familiar with balance, weight, spatial awareness and gravity.

  1. Self-esteem

Learners can take risks in their block play, helping them to discover that they have independent ideas. They experience a sense of achievement as they ‘have a go’, creating and developing something new and unique.

>> 8 Reasons regular block play is important for preschoolers