8 life skills you can teach your child with one toy

  • October 19, 2017


The first idea that comes to most parents mind when they see these hexagon building blocks is to build with it existing and imaginary structures. 

However, using this toy you can teach your toddler a variety of life skills even though it is recommended for preschoolers and up.

I introduce toys to children as soon as the child can play with them safely with my supervision.

At 12-14-months of age the child is ready to learn from this toy. Younger children put everything in their mouth and the single hexagon is too small to hand it to them.

A 12-month-old might still be mouthing so in that case do not hand them the single hexagon yet. However, you can play with the other, larger pieces.

Use this toy to teach them that they cannot mouth everything.

HexActly in box


If you want to hand the toy to the child to play independently with, than this toy should be given to children 3+. Just like the package says.

Probably even better to give it to a 4-5-year-old. The 5-year-old will have the interest, the understanding, the patience and the cognitive/motor capacity to disciple what this toy can offer.

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Teachers tool not a toy


To take maximum advantage of this type of toys I find it is better to start considering it as a teachers tool not as a toy.

This toy is a good example of a great parents tool, instead of a toy that could be handed to a child to play with. As a teaching tool it can be “played with” at a much younger age because you the parent will guide the game.

Also, you will keep it in a safe place away from little hands that lose all pieces.

the parts of HexActly

8 life skills you can teach your child with HexActly

  • The tactile and visual sensation of smooth painted wood.
  • The visual sensations of color and reflecting light.
  • The tactile and visual sensation of flat lines, angles, planes, shapes.
  • The tactile and visual sensation of pieces becoming one and then separating. Over and over again.
  • The tactile and visual sensation of changing shapes and structures.
  • The auditory and tactile sensation of small wooden pieces knocked together.
  • The auditory sensation of the pieces falling onto wood table or floor, onto plastic trays, onto tile floor or lack of sound when pieces fall onto carpet, couch, bed.

How to play/teach with this toy?

General rules:

  • Play with your child in the high chair.
    Children of this age like to walk around and they would miss the teaching concepts of this toy if they are not still.

  • Start by playing for 5 minutes and do not play more than 15-20 minutes at a time.
    This is a scientifically proven time-frame to be able to absorb most that is presented to us by the teacher.

    Interesting: This time span is the same for adults.

  • Prepare your toys and your game plan before you sit the baby down to play.

Game one
The game of explotation


Age: 12 months to 24 months old
Playtime: 15-20 minutes max

Preparation: Separate the blocks either by size or shapes or color. Prepare empty identical containers.

Objectives: Experiencing the physical properties of these blocks. Placing blocks in and out of container.


The game:


  • Hand the baby one block at a time. If she drops it or seems done with it take it away gently and give your baby a different block. Either different in color or in shape.

  • OR Hand the baby one block at a time. If she drops it or seems done with it take it away gently and give your baby a similar block. Either similar in color or in shape.

  • OR Hand the baby one block at a time. If she seems done with it take her hand and gently put the block into the container.

  • OR Place one bock into the container while she is watching. Hand the baby the container and encourage her to take the block out by holding the container firmly.

  • OR Banging two blocks together. First demonstrate, then hand two blocks to the baby and bang the blocks with your hands helping over her hands.

When handing her the blocks in any of the above scenarios talk about the experience you want her to focus on. Talk in short sentences and single words first.

Your goal is to eventually talk in full adult sentences as the child ages and progresses. Here are some examples of words to use when you are:

  • Teaching the smoothness of the painted wood. “Smooth.”, “Feels smooth.”, “Painted smooth.”

  • The sensation of flat lines, angles, planes, shapes. “Sharp.”, “Flat.”, “Line.”, “Hexagon.

  • The size difference. “Small.”, “Big.”

  • The movement of putting block into the container and taking it out: “In.”, “Out.”

  • The movement and sounds of banging blocks together: “Bang.”, “Bang together.”, “Noise.”


Game two
The game of vocabulary building


Age: 12 months to 2.5 years old
Playtime: 15-20 minutes max

Preparation: Separate the blocks either by size or shapes or color. Prepare either identical in size see-through or colorful containers. Please make the colorful containers match the colors of the blocks.

Objectives: Learning the shape names, colors, action words.


The game:


  • Hand the baby one block at a time. While she is exploring it talk about the experience you want her to focus on. Talk in short sentences and single words first. Your goal is to eventually talk in full adult sentences as the child ages and progresses.

  • Teach the colors.

  • Teach the word: hexagon, stack, standing, on, take, give, put I, take out, sort it, matching color ext.

  • As baby ages and matures color sort the blocks into containers. First, demonstrate it to her then assist your baby hand over hand.

Game three 
The game of building and knocking off structures

Age: 12 months to 3 years old
Playtime: 15-20 minutes max

Preparation: Separate the blocks either by size or shapes. 

Objective: The joy of building structures and the destruction of them so it can be built again.


The game:

  • Build stacks of 3-4 blocks first and then knock them off. Eventually build towers of 8 blocks.

  • Build any structure then knock it off. Start with small structures and eventually build more elaborate structures as your baby matures.

  • Build imaginary and existing structures like a house, a tree, a star, a square ext.

Game four 
The game of counting


Age: 18 months to 4 years old
Playtime: 15-20 minutes max

Preparation: Separate the blocks by size and shape or by color. The more identical they are the more the child will focus on counting. Prepare containers that fit all blocks by size and one large container to fit all blocks.

Objective: Understanding the concept of counting. Repeating numbers.


The game:


  • Place one of a kind of block slowly into the container. While doing so say one, two and so on. Repeat with the different blocks into different containers.

  • Please all blocks into the large container to count till 24.

Clean up the toy while she is still in the chair. Tell her, show her how you are cleaning up, making sure not to lose any pieces.

Eventually, clean up together. This will teach her to clean up her toys independently.

When your child learned all the above the tool becomes a toy. Hand her the toy. She is now ready to play with it independently using the basics you taught her and further exploring it with the joy of imagination.

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