Building skills with LEGOs: the developmental benefits of bricks
LEGOs have changed a lot since we were kids, haven’t they? Along with all the basic City and Creator series, and the open-ended LEGO and DUPLO building sets, we have zillions of licensed characters (Star Wars and Disney and hobbits, oh my!) and even LEGO original licensed characters, including the LEGO Movie, LEGO Friends, and Ninjago. Kids can’t get enough of those irresistible bricks, and we can see why: LEGO sets lure in kids with their favorite characters and then naturally lead them to stretch their creative powers and build their own original structures and creatures.
With that said, it’s worth noting that along with all the fun, LEGOs are a superb educational toy. This list of the benefits of LEGOs barely scratches the surface:
- Lego provides tools that develop lateral thinking in a fun environment
- It teaches kids to think in three dimensions
- It improves literacy as kids work with instructions
- It develops problem-solving, organization, and planning by construction
- It improves creativity
- It enhances communication and critical thinking
- It boosts kids’ motor development.
This cool infographic goes into way more detail:
Of course, the smart folks at the LEGO company are well aware of the benefits of their toys, and the LEGO Education site and the LEGO Foundation are expanding on these ideas every day. If you’re homeschooling, or just want to encourage busy builders to dig deeper into the creative possibilities of their favorite toy, these sites have plenty of resources to get you started.
As they say at the LEGO Foundation website, “Play unlocks learning and development benefits that last a lifetime, and childhood presents a critical window of opportunity.” LEGOs build more than just castles, racecars, airplanes, and Millennium Falcons – they build minds and imaginations!
And even grownups are still being creative with LEGOs… although we’re glad they haven’t actually made this set yet!
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