Beautiful Reggio Emilia Inspired Wooden Block Set

I can’t say enough about the importance of building block play. Like me, Learning Materials Workshop knows that children need blocks to explore, invent, represent, design, and imagine.

President of Learning Materials Workshop, designer and educator, Karen Hewitt of Vermont, U.S.A., creates play objects for children and designed these most fantastic colorful, wooden triangular blocks called Villetta blocks. She believes in open-ended play (AMEN!) and using play to inspire fantasy and form-making.

We do, too. And we love her beautifully crafted building blocks!

When Karen sent us the Villetta blocks to try, we shared them with our friends who have two boys ages 3 and 5, and together the kids played and created with much delight. (And I just couldn’t resist the above photo with the nose-picking! he, he)

The Villetta blocks include 12 natural and 12 colored wood prisms.

Learning Materials Workshop is the U.S. distributor for Reggio Emilia publications and they distribute the Reggio Emilia (preschool) books, DVDs, and videos. To learn more about Reggio Emilia, visit Learning Materials Workshop. You also might like this NY Times article, How to Use Blocks to Teach.


Learning Materials Workshop is offering Imagination Soup readers the chance to win a $29.99 Villetta Block Set. To enter for a chance to win, leave a comment below by December 8, 2011, midnight MST. By entering this sweepstakes, you agree to Imagination Soup’s official sweepstakes rules. No purchase necessary. Open to individuals in U.S. only, 18 years of age or older, void where prohibited.

FOR AN EXTRA ENTRY: Like Learning Materials Workshop on Facebook and leave a separate comment saying you did with your FB name (if different.)

Keep Reading . . . 

 Holiday Gift Guide: Games and Blocks

 Word Collection Jars

 Car, Truck, & Construction Play


  1. says

    Thank you so much for your wonderful comments and lovely photographs of children using our blocks. We are also thrilled with the recent buzz that has been generated from the NY Times article on the resurgence of block play in some early childhood classrooms. I do want to mention that I have been designing open-ended block sets since the early 1970’s at least twenty years before I knew about Reggio Emilia’s infant-toddler and preschools. I first visited Reggio Emilia in 1992 and was certainly inspired by their ideas. This is one reason that I became the US distributor for Reggio Children publications. My block designs come from my background as an artist, an early childhood teacher, a toy historian and my graduate studies at Bank Street College of Education. We are so pleased to have participated in your give-away on your informative and beautifully designed website.

  2. LC says

    The blocks are great, but those are some handsome models you’ve got. Must be expensive to get such talent (multitasking at such a young age–nose picking and block planning).

  3. Maria Gianferrari says

    My daughter is nearly 10, and still loves to play with blocks! And my paternal relatives are from Emiliglia Romagna, the province, and tiny “paesini” near Reggio Emilia.

    Thanks for sharing this!

  4. says

    I liked them on Facebook…and discovered that that they are located where we used to live…and where my son was born! Wish I were still there to do some shopping!

  5. says

    What beautiful blocks! These kind of toys are my favorite – simple, non-plastic, and sure to spark the imagination.

    I have two little girls (plus, one-on-the-way!). They would be delighted to play with this set.

  6. Stephanie W says

    We would love to win these blocks for my daughter and son. I would also love to do a creative theme with these blocks for my daughters daisy troop. Thanks for a wonderful opportunity!

  7. Sari says

    Absolutely beautiful! My daughter was trained to teach the Reggio way. She also visited schools in Italy prior to graduating last year. Theses would be a terrific addition to her classroom.


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