Did you know you can sharpen your child’s intellectual development in a fun way by teaching them to solve the Rubik’s cube? It’s the perfect solution to boredom and a creative machine to help your child develop essential skills like curiosity, concentration, and critical and intellectual thinking.
Let’s explore what a Rubik’s cube is, the benefits of teaching children how to solve a Rubik’s cube and how to solve a Rubik’s cube for kids, so it can keep them busy and entertained while flexing their mental muscles!
What Is A Rubik’s Cube?
The Rubik’s cube is a multicolored mechanical puzzle invented by Hungarian sculptor and professor of architecture Erno Rubik in 1974. It ranks among the world’s best-selling toys and is one of the 100 most influential inventions of the 20th Century.
The Rubik’s cube puzzle consists of 27 smaller cubes in a 3x3x3 grid. Each cube is painted red, blue, green, orange, yellow, or white. The colors are usually mixed up by rotating the cube, and you try to solve the puzzle by realigning each of the colored sides back through a series of rotations.
Each side must be a single color when the Rubik’s cube is solved. The part of the cube that you turn is called the layer, and no matter how you hold the Rubik’s cube, there are always three layers. These include the top layer, the middle layer, and the bottom or last layer.
Rubik’s cube solving is popular worldwide and has developed into a sport called speedcubing, where a solver attempts to solve the Rubik’s cube as quickly as possible. The current world record for the fastest solve is held by Yusheng Du, who solved the Rubik’s cube in 3.47 seconds at 19!
The Benefits Of Teaching Children How To Solve A Rubik’s Cube
Developing Problem-Solving Skills
Life revolves around tackling challenges, and deciphering the Rubik’s cube involves dissecting the problem into smaller components and addressing them individually.
As youngsters engage in unraveling the Rubik’s cube, they explore various turns, twists, and combinations, gaining insight into the intricacies of the problem-solving process.
They grasp the significance of each move, testing combinations that either bring them closer to or farther from the solution.
By visualizing the impact of each maneuver, they begin to discern, absorb, and establish patterns that lead them towards their objective.
This process hones their problem-solving abilities and enhances cognitive aspects such as confronting new challenges, acquiring proficiency in languages like English, and excelling in mathematics.
In essence, the Rubik’s cube serves as a microcosm of life’s challenges, fostering skills that extend beyond mere puzzle-solving, preparing individuals for a diverse array of intellectual endeavors.
Boosting Your Child’s Reflexes
To solve the Rubik’s cube, your child will need to memorize many algorithms and patterns while turning and twisting the layers in under a few seconds. An algorithm is a memorized sequence of moves with the desired effect on the Rubik’s cube.
Trying out such algorithms in a few seconds requires sharp reflexes and incredible eye-hand coordination. It improves your child’s reaction time, attention span, and agility and paves the way for better memorization. As the mind races through the various possible moves, the hands and eyes work in perfect unison.
Such optimal utilization of human reflexes at a young age develops the perfect learning system in your child.
Improving Observational Skills
As your child engages in tackling the challenges of the 3×3 Rubik’s cube solution, the synchronized and regular movements involved contribute to the enhancement of their visual and spatial intelligence.
The development of visual-spatial intelligence empowers them to accurately visualize the world, adapt their environment based on their perceptions, and recreate visual experiences.
This process not only reinforces their cognitive and analytical skills but also heightens their awareness of various patterns.
Such improvements in spatial intelligence play a crucial role in fostering conceptual understanding, mathematical proficiency, and success in diverse career paths such as art, engineering, architecture, medical surgery, and professional sports.
The interplay between visual-spatial intelligence and academic performance is essential, extending its benefits to nearly all career domains and everyday tasks.
This connection underscores the significance of mastering the layer corners of the Rubik’s cube, transcending it from a mere puzzle to a tool for cognitive and spatial development available on platforms like Amazon.
Improving Determination and Concentration
Engaging a [year-old] in solving the 3×3 Rubik’s Cube or the pyraminx can significantly boost their focus and concentration on the given tasks. As they explore multiple approaches to unravel these puzzles, it encourages them to sidestep distractions.
Any puzzle employing a trial-and-error method immerses the young player in a realm of diverse possibilities and strategies, thereby fortifying their determination.
Their brain stays actively involved, constantly adapting and recognizing new opportunities to achieve the desired outcome more efficiently.
Over time, this practice enhances their cognitive abilities, enabling them to tackle more advanced problems or challenges with increased proficiency.
Developing Visual And Spatial Intelligence
As your child attempts to solve the Rubik’s cube, the synchronized and regular movements help develop their visual and spatial intelligence. Visual-spatial intelligence enables them to visualize the world accurately, modify their surroundings based on their perceptions and recreate the aspects of their visual experiences.
It reinforces their cognitive and analytical skills and improves their awareness of different patterns. Spatial intelligence is critical in developing conceptual understanding, mathematical skills, and success in careers like art, engineering, architecture, medical surgery, and professional sports.
There’s a vital connection between visual-spatial intelligence and academic performance, and it helps in almost all careers and everyday tasks.
Increasing Speed And Agility
Solving the Rubik’s cube is a game of speed and time that involves an optimum simultaneous synchronization of human reflexes. As they continue to practice, your child increases their speed in solving the puzzle by learning to employ accurate moves.
It provides agility to their fingers, mind, and eyes, which is beneficial in performing almost all activities faster and better. It helps their mind and body get sharper, in better shape, and more coordinated.
Relieving Boredom and Staying Productive
The Rubik’s cube is the perfect solution whether your child is hyperactive or gets bored quickly. With a Rubik’s cube in their hand, your child’s mind will not wander off since it requires concentration.
Puzzles like Rubik’s cubes are excellent mind teasers that keep your child’s mind occupied productively instead of spending all their time staring at screens and electronic devices.
Developing A Sense Of Gratification
Your child gets a deep sense of achievement and gratification as they progress in solving the puzzle from the white cross to the yellow cross stages. It develops their perseverance as they put in the time and effort to accomplish their end goal.
It boosts their confidence and teaches them that effort and work eventually pay off even when things are difficult or trying.
How To Solve The Rubik’s Cube
Although most beginners give up on the Rubik’s cube the first time after trying it for a few minutes, solving it is easier than you think. The secret is knowing the beginner method of how to solve the Rubik’s cube for kids.
Here’s a beginner’s guide with step-by-step instructions to help your child or anyone else become a Rubik’s cube solving pro with a bit of practice. First, you need to learn some crucial cubing notation:
- U – Rotating the top layer of the cube clockwise
- D – Rotating the bottom layer of the cube clockwise
- F – Rotating the front layer of the cube clockwise
- B – Rotating the back layer of the cube clockwise
- R – Rotating the right layer of the cube clockwise
- L – Rotating the left layer of the cube clockwise
U’ D’ F’ B’ R’ L’ is the equivalent counter-clockwise moves. Any letter followed by the number 2 indicates making a move twice.
Step 1: Build The White Cross
The first step is building the white cross, and it can involve lots of trial and error. Find each white edge and get them into position, so the white sticker is on top. The side stickers should match the side centerpieces. With a bit of practice and work, you’ll figure it out.
Step 2: Solve The White Corners
Next, you need to solve the white corners without losing the white cross. Start by holding the cube with the white cross facing up. Look for the white corner pieces, and if a corner piece is already in the bottom layer, rotate the bottom layer.
The correct placement is if a corner piece is between centerpieces with the same colors. Here you can use some basic algorithms to get accurate cube placements. If the matched sticker on the top layer is right of the center, perform R U R’, known as the right trigger.
If the matched sticker is on the left of the center, perform L’ U’ L, known as the left trigger. If the white cube is at the bottom, perform R’ D2 R D R’ D’ R. If the white sticker is at the top corners, but the top layer doesn’t have all similar colors, perform L D L’ R’ D’ R. The white or first layer should now be complete.
Step 3: Solve The Middle Layer
Next, you’ll solve the middle or second layer by putting the four edges in their correct position. Find the four edges and line each piece matching its center. The edge piece color on the top face needs to match a side centerpiece.
If you want to get the center top piece to the second layer left, perform;
U’ L’ U L U F U’ F’
If you want to get the center top piece to the second layer right;
U R U’ R’ U’ F’ U F
In case an edge piece is oriented wrong, or it’s not in the top layer;
U R U’ R’ U’ F’ U F U2 U R U’ R’ U’ F’ U F
Step 4: Make The Yellow Cross
You’ll now create a cross on the cube’s upward pointing or top face.
State 1: You Already Have The Yellow Cross
You can skip this step if you’ve already got a yellow cross. You’ll have to flip the yellow edges to get the yellow cross if you’re in the circumstances below. You can use one algorithm to fix all possible scenarios;
U F R F’ R’ U’
Case 2: The Yellow Dot
If you can’t see any of the four yellow edges on the yellow face, do the algorithm once to get a yellow ‘L.’ Do an R2 or right twice to put the ‘L’ in the lower back corner.
Repeat the algorithm to get a yellow line. Ensure the line is horizontal and repeat the algorithm once to get a yellow cross.
Case 3: The Yellow ‘L’
If you already have the yellow ‘L,’ simply put it in the lower back corner and repeat the algorithm to get a yellow line. If the line is horizontal, repeat the algorithm for a yellow cross.
Case 4: The Yellow Line
You can have two or four yellow edges visible on the yellow face, making it look like a line. First, ensure the ‘line’ is horizontal and perform the algorithm to get a yellow cross.
Once you have the cross, align it with the center dots in the second layer with the following algorithm:
U R U’ R U R2 U’
Step 5: Twist The Corners
The last step to solving the cube is twisting the corners. Position one of the twisted corners at the front and perform the following algorithm once:
U L U’ L’ U L U’ L’
You can repeat the algorithm one more time if it’s not solved.
Here’s a full video of one of the easiest tutorials to guide you through these easy steps. Happy cubing
People Also Ask
How do you teach a child to solve a Rubik’s cube?
You can teach a child to solve a Rubik’s cube by making it fun for them! A beginner’s step-by-step method can help and ensure that you praise and reward them for their efforts each time they achieve a milestone.
How do you solve a Rubik’s Cube?
It involves moving layer by layer and following the beginner’s guide with step-by-step instructions. YouTube videos can guide you and show you how other solvers are doing it!