Once upon a time, playing with blocks was considered mere child’s play. Now it has officially been deemed vital to the successful construction of children’s cognitive, spatial and mathematical skills. Drop by one of the many play-spaces in NYC that boasts a bevy of building blocks. Here’s the exclusive scoop on eight spots that feature all kinds of build ’em up and knock ’em down fun.

Image via Staten Island Children's Museum

Go On a Building Adventure

The oldest and most beloved exhibit at Staten Island Children’s Museum is Block Harbor, a nautical-themed play space boasting a real wooden ship complete with galley, reading nooks, and a spacious wooden block area perfect for taking an imaginary sailing adventure around the world. SICM encourages families with toddlers to make this their first stop at the museum, for a fun-filled dose of creativity and social development.

Staten Island Children’s Museum
Tickets: $6/person
1000 Richmond Terrace
Staten Island
Online: sichildrensmuseum.org

Still looking for more building block fun? You may already know (because you read it here, first) about Imagination Playground, the Creative Dream Playhouse, and, of course, not only the LEGO flagship store, but also its outposts at Toys ‘R’ Us and FAO Shawarz. If not, click through to read all about them!

Where does your kid like to build towers in the city?

–Alina Adams