Lego Program: Version 3

Last month I started making more changes to my Lego Program at library #2. I also did the program for the first time at library #1, with interesting results. First I’ll talk about version 3.

Version 3

-First, as kids sit down, I put either a piece of tape or a little blank sticker in front of the kid and put down a letter. This is for voting later on.

-Then I go around and give each kid ONE scoop of Legos. That made them nervous.

-They have 15 minutes to build one thing based on a theme I give them (example: dragons)

-After they are done they put their creation on a separate table and replace their sticker below it.

-I give them one or two more scoops of Legos. For another 15 minutes they build something on a second theme, probably something that fits the first. (example: caves or castles). They can use pieces left over from the first build. They can NOT remove or add pieces or change anything else to the first build.

-They put their second creation next to the first.

-Each participant takes a slip of paper and writes down the letter of their favorite. I tally the scores and winners are awarded prizes.

It’s pretty dang different from version 2, isn’t it? For one thing, kids again can no longer get their own reshuffled scoops as in version 2. There are no more shuffles at all. Trading is still allowed. And it’s broken up into two shorter builds rather than one large one. Previously I gave them a whole hour to just build, and then with voting and clean up would take another half an hour. Now it just takes an hour for everything!

More important than my laziness (which is pretty important to me), I wanted to keep the kids on their toes. With a full hour to build one thing some of the kids were going overboard, building giant, complex builds that would break in pieces before I could take it to the display. By limiting their time and resources they’re forced to be more creative. And they all did great! I was happy to see them adapt so well to major changes in the program’s routine.

Another option: split it into three builds, with the first being made with ten Lego pieces or so. I like this idea but was worried it would be too crazy off the bat.

Also! I just added another trick yesterday: first I had them build a boat. Then I told them to build a whale- as big or BIGGER than the boat. For kids that made small boats this was easy. Not so much for the ones that used up their entire scoop.

Lego at Libris#1

I’ve done it twice so far at my other library, with interesting results. First of all, the kids coming were much younger both times.

To start out with I tried using Version 2 rules. Except….nobody traded with each other. And nobody wanted to get a fresh scoop of Legos. Why? Because unlike Library #2 where all the Legos were donated and spanned different sets and decades, all the bricks for Library #1 came in a brand new assorted bin. Why trade when everybody has the same thing?

For the second time around I used our craft trays and let the kids build on the floor of our storyroom. It made setup and cleanup a lot easier. We also have a lot of the flat plates as seen in the picture. This is an excellent thing to include, if you can. Kids love building scenes and it makes transporting them to a display a million times easier. And a couple creative kids at Library #1 even made two dimensional pictures with them!

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