1. Helps Build Confidence – The Lego Juniors construction sets are especially great for young builders. Some of the bigger more complicated pieces (like part of the castle wall) come as one big piece. Also, the bags are separated and numbered to make it easier to follow the directions. Benjamin was able to follow the directions page by page with almost no help from me or his dad. I could definitely see how proud and confident he felt as he built.
2. Learn to Follow Directions – Maybe I’m just training my kids to be able to build their own IKEA furniture when they get older, but I LOVE seeing Benjamin carefully follow the directions. This is an important thing that kids need to be able to do when starting Kindergarten, and even if they aren’t able to follow the directions completely by themselves from start to finish, they will learn a lot by just trying. (And like IKEA furniture, the instructions aren’t written, but are clear picture instructions that even a pre-reader can follow.)
3. Dexterity – Playing with LEGOs helps with fine motor skills and coordination, and helps little fingers learn to do little tasks. This dexterity will help kids a lot when they are learning to write.
4. Understanding of Simple Mechanics – Some of my favorite LEGO pieces and sets are the ones that have simple machines. This is a great early window into the world of physics. This little catapult is really just a working lever. When you press down on one side, you can send things flying into the air from the other side.
5. Working Independently – LEGOs are a great toy for kids to play with by themselves. They are able to work and build independently from other kids and parents, and the LEGO Juniors sets especially can make that possible.
6. Working Together – LEGOs are also a great project for teamwork. When Benjamin was having a little bit of trouble putting a piece in the right spot, he asked his dad for help (and what dad isn’t happy to help play with LEGOs?!). Building with LEGOS is a great opportunity to work with a friend, whether you are taking turns following directions, or combining two completely different ideas into one unique creation.
7. Encourages Imagination and Pretend Play – Einstein himself said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge.” LEGOs encourage fun and imaginative play in a constructive way that is so beneficial to little growing brains. Benjamin and Lyla especially loved playing with all of the LEGO people in the LEGO castle after Benjamin finished building it. Of course they brought out some of their old LEGO people to play along in the new castle.
8. Encourages them to Think Outside the Box – Following the instructions is great. However, there is so much to be learned from completely ignoring the instructions and the “supposed tos” and thinking completely outside the box. You want to put a LEGO head on top of a window on top of a horse? YES! You want to make letters out of LEGOs? YES! You want to see what happens when you stamp play-doh with LEGOs? YES!
9. Finger Strength – This is another important Kindergarten skill. Playing with LEGOs helps kids build more muscles in their fingers which helps them have a stronger grip and more control when they are coloring, cutting with scissors, and learning to write.
10. Fosters Creativity – As a lover of all things creative, I love seeing how LEGOs bring out unique creativity in kids. I love how you can see a child’s personality shine through in the things he or she creates, like a little window into his or her head. Sometimes it’s too easy to get caught up in worksheets and checklists, and to easy to loose track of how important CREATIVITY and IMAGINATION are for kids (and for grown-ups too!).
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.