Building toys are a great open-ended toy. They inspire kids to be creative while also helping them practice hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills. They’re also great for helping kids learn some basic engineering concepts. But with so many choices, it can be hard to know which to choose. Our top pick is the LEGO Large Brick Box. Lego is an excellent option for kids this age as it’s durable and flexible. If you’re looking for something other than Lego, don’t worry, there are plenty of options on this list.
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- Best Construction Toys for 5 Year Olds
- Best Overall – LEGO Large Brick Box
- Best for Castle Building – FAO Schwarz Wooden Castle Building Blocks
- Budget Option – Plus Plus Basic Mini Puzzle Blocks
- Best for Kid Who Love Tools – Flyingseeds Drill Toy
- Best for Developing Fine Motor Skills – Brain Flakes
- Best for Encouraging Creativity – WishaLife Pipe and Tube Construction Set
- Best for Building with Varied Pieces – Cossy Building Blocks
- Best for Introducing Simple Mechanics – Learning Resources Gears! Gears! Gears!
- Best for Learning About 3D Structures – Veatree Magnetic Sticks
- Best for Big Creations – Obuby Fort Building Kit
- Best Magnetic Tiles – Skymags Magnetic Blocks
- Best for Making Cute Creations – Kid K’nex Budding Builders Set
- Best Interactive Toy – BeebeeRun Marble Run Set
- Best for Kids Who Love Nature – Tina’s Toy Company Flower Garden Building Set
- Best for Those Who Like Chunky Sized Pieces – Fansteck 12 in 1 Building Toy
- What to Consider When Buying a Construction Set for 5 Year Olds
- Frequently Asked Questions
Best Construction Toys for 5 Year Olds
Best Overall – LEGO Large Brick Box
You really can’t have a list of the best building toys without having LEGO on the list. My pick is this LEGO Large Brick Box is a set that shows LEGO at its best. There are a wide variety of bricks in a mix of colors, and there’s no limitations.
Another reason to go with this set is that it comes in a handy storage bin. The LEGO shaped container is ideal for storing all the pieces when you’re kids are done playing. It’s also big enough to hold creations they want to keep and add more LEGO pieces to the collection later.
What I love about LEGO is that it offers kids the freedom to build anything they want. The pieces are durable, and all fit together easily. That’s what has made it a toy that has stood the test of time so well.
Best for Castle Building – FAO Schwarz Wooden Castle Building Blocks
If your child loves to build castles, then this Wooden Castle Building Blocks set a fantastic option. The set has 150 pieces. They are all beautifully shaped and finished and aren’t just standard block shapes.
In this set, you will find pieces for making parapets, turrets, and bridges. It really is purpose-made for building impressive castles. The pieces are all reasonably large for wooden building blocks, so the castles you can build are a really generous size.
Budget Option – Plus Plus Basic Mini Puzzle Blocks
Plus Plus Basic Mini Puzzle Blocks is a really simple but creative building set. All of the pieces are the same shape. They look like two plus signs pushed together, which is how they got the name. With this simple geometric shape, kids can create all sorts of amazing creations.
The unique shape of these pieces means that many things you make with them will look pixelated. So if your child likes that style of art, cartoons, and games, then this the perfect construction set for them.
These are small building blocks, so they are good for making small and detailed models. They come in a plastic cylinder for storage, which is the perfect size to fit in a backpack. So this is one of the best building toys for taking out and about.
Best for Kid Who Love Tools – Flyingseeds Drill Toy
If your child loves tools, then this is the perfect construction set for them. The Flyingseeds Drill Toy comes with a child-sized electric drill, a screwdriver, and a wrench. They can use these tools to screw together the plates, which come in various shapes and colors.
All the kit comes inside a briefcase, which also serves as a base for their creations. So storage is easy.
My son has one of these, and he loves it. However, I do have a couple of words of warning. The first is that all the plates need to be popped out before they can be used. So it’s worth opening it up and doing all of that before you give it to your kid. Secondly, there are some fun little card pop-outs that can be used to make ramps and buildings. They probably won’t last too long, but I don’t think that a reason not to get this because the set is excellent without them.
Best for Developing Fine Motor Skills – Brain Flakes
Brain Flakes are one of the best building toys you can find if you’re on the hunt for something different. The construction pieces don’t look anything like a traditional building block. But, you can still create some amazing things with them.
All of the pieces come in a handy storage tub with a handle on top. So clean up and storage is easy.
The kit comes with some instructions to get you started. The ideas include some really fun things. If your child really enjoys following the instructions, there is a whole bunch of free model ideas and instructions on the company’s website.
A bonus point about this construction set is that it doesn’t hurt if you stand on them. It’s just something to bear in mind if your kids aren’t great at tidying and don’t wear shoes in your home.
Best for Encouraging Creativity – WishaLife Pipe and Tube Construction Set
This Pipe and Tube Construction Set is an interesting building toy for kids to try. It’s a little different from many other options but is easy to master. The pieces can be put together easily and are a good size for little hands.
These blocks are compatible with Duplo blocks, so it can be a great addition if your child already has Duplo blocks. It can add an extra dimension and get them playing with a toy they might not use as much anymore.
The instructions include a range of ideas to get your kids started. It also comes in a nice and easy to use storage tub.
Best for Building with Varied Pieces – Cossy Building Blocks
Cossy Building Blocks are a fascinating building toy. The pieces that you get are made up of three primary sorts. There are connectors, which are straight pieces with grabby connections at the end. Then there are balls and wheels. These are the pieces that the connectors join to. The balls can hold loads of different connectors and act like junctions. Finally, there are plates. These clip to the sides of the connectors a little like walls.
This combination of pieces means that you can make some really interesting shapes. It will make your kids think about the things they are building differently. It encourages kids to think about the underlying structure of things, not just what you can see on the outside.
Best for Introducing Simple Mechanics – Learning Resources Gears! Gears! Gears!
Gears! Gears! Gears! is an excellent toy for kids who like moving toys. With this set, kids connect together the gears into all sorts of exciting shapes. They can even build vertically. All the pieces are gears, so when you turn the handle, all the pieces spin together.
This is a really fun set that helps kids to understand some basic principles of mechanics. All the surprising ways these pieces can join together means this is a toy that will keep kids engaged for quite a while.
Best for Learning About 3D Structures – Veatree Magnetic Sticks
Veatree Magnetic Sticks is a really great set for helping kids learn about magnetism. The sticks in the set are strong magnets which you can join together into any shape you can imagine. The steel balls are magnetic, but not magnets. That means they won’t stick to each other, but they do attach to the sticks.
The magnets in the sticks are strong enough that you can hang up to three of the steel balls from a single stick. This lets kids make some really fascinating creations.
The only negative about this set is that it is quite small. You don’t get enough pieces to make the structures on the box.
Best for Big Creations – Obuby Fort Building Kit
The Obuby Fort Building Kit is the perfect option for kids who love to build forts. The lightweight sticks and connecters are perfect for building kid-sized castles and dens. Throw on some lightweight blankets, and you have the ultimate fort, without the need to move your furniture around.
This is a really fun set that your kids will love to play with. It all comes with a nice storage bag as well, so it’s easy to keep all the pieces together. The size of the forts you can build with it is a little limited. If you have more than two children, you might want to get a second set. Otherwise, you and your kids just have to get creative, which is no bad thing.
Best Magnetic Tiles – Skymags Magnetic Blocks
SKYMAGS Magnetic Blocks are a great option if you are looking for a magnetic tile construction set. This one comes with 60 pieces, in a variety of shapes. It’s a really good set for creating buildings as it has window and balcony pieces, as well as the standard squares and triangles,
The pieces are well made and stick together easily. This is because every piece has two magnets on each side.
The good thing about this set is that, for the price, you get a lot of tiles. You can make a good range of buildings with just the tiles in the box.
Best for Making Cute Creations – Kid K’nex Budding Builders Set
The Kid K’nex Budding Builders Set is a great starter set for introducing children to the world of K’nex. These pieces snap together in the same way that the regular K’nex pieces do. However, the pieces are larger and easier to use for little hands.
The set comes with some fun pieces. There are cartoon eyes, ears, and tails. This lets kids build some really cute and friendly critters. It’s perfect for pretend play as well as building and creativity.
Best Interactive Toy – BeebeeRun Marble Run Set
This Marble Run Set is a really great option if your child likes marble runs. It comes with a wide variety of fun pieces, including vortexes, wiggly track pieces, and spinning fans.
The pieces fit together easily and are bright and colorful. Your child can start with simple marble runs and then get creative. This set is big enough to support multiple intertwining tracks at once, so the sky’s the limit. It even comes with 30 balls, so if a couple gets lost, you’ve still got plenty to keep playing with.
Best for Kids Who Love Nature – Tina’s Toy Company Flower Garden Building Set
This Flower Garden Building Set is a really nice alternative to more traditional building toys. It is still very much a construction toy; children can build to their heart’s content. The pieces just happen to be flower parts, which lets children understand that flowers are made up of different structures.
As well as the bases and flower parts, you also get some bugs, a watering can, and a set of activity cards. This lets children have all sorts of fun while also learning new skills at the same time.
Best for Those Who Like Chunky Sized Pieces – Fansteck 12 in 1 Building Toy
The Fansteck 12 in 1 Building Toy is a great option for children who are not used to playing with building toys. The pieces are quite chunky and are much larger than many of the other options. They are still small enough for young children to handle, though.
The set comes with instructions to build 12 vehicles. These include a forklift, a crane, and several cars. All the models have cute eyes, which makes them really fun and interactive.
With the pieces, you can easily play and make your own models. The set is quite flexible and can be used; however, your child wants.
The set does come in a storage box. The only thing is that to get the pieces in, you have to pack them just right. It’s a bit of a challenge for adults, never mind a 5 year old. So it can be worth considering alternative storage solutions.
What to Consider When Buying a Construction Set for 5 Year Olds
5 year olds are not known for being gentle with their toys. Building toys, in particular, often have to survive a lot. After all, most 5 year olds still enjoy knocking their creations down as much as they like building them.
If your 5 year old is still in the wrecking ball stage of construction play, then you might want to look for the more sturdy option that does still fall apart satisfyingly. Wooden blocks are a great option for kids who like to knock down their creations to start over again.
Size of Pieces
Building toys for kids come in a wide variety of sizes. You can get some sets which have small pieces. These are really good for making more detailed creations. They are also great for helping kids to develop their fine motor skills. Building toys that have much larger pieces allow kids to make some bigger constructions, which pushes them to develop their hand eye coordination more.
However, the biggest impact of the piece size is how much storage space you’ll need. Many building toys for kids do come with storage solutions, but they can still take up a lot of space. So, keep this in mind when you’re making your decision.
Different building sets offer different building experiences for kids. Some are really open-ended and let kids create fantastical creations. Magnetic building toys, for example, can often let you make things that might not stand up otherwise.
Some building sets are a little more narrow. It can be much harder to build anything other than the designs suggested on the box. However, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. In fact, these sets can really help kids to develop their problem solving skills. In order to build whatever they want, they have to get more creative.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are building toys for kids good learning toys?
Building toys are great toys for helping kids to develop a wide range of skills. They give opportunities for kids to develop both their fine motor skills and their hand eye coordination. They encourage imaginative play and exploration. They are also good for practicing cooperative skills. Then, of course, there is the introduction to engineering and construction concepts.
So, yes, building toys are a great learning toy. Not only that, but they’re also fun.
Do both boys and girls like building toys?
Building toys have traditionally been considered boys toys. However, girls love to create things, as well. The wonderful thing about the best building toys is that they are totally open ended. There is no ‘right way’ to play with them. This means that all children can get something out of playing with them.
What’s the best building set for teaching problem solving?
Any building set is going to provide some level of challenge for children to overcome. When they have an image in their mind of what they want to create, they have to instantly start problem solving to find the best way to bring it to life.
If you’re hoping to help your kid practice their problem-solving skills, then any of these building toys is going to give them lots of opportunities for practice.
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Last update on 2021-01-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API