Let’s Talk About Legos #illumedati 5


Hey everyone, it’s Whatever Wednesdays again. I’ve returned safely from California and was back on Oahu for July 4th to watch the fireworks. However, now I’m going to talk about something completely unrelated. Let’s Talk About Legos. 

Legos

Stock Photo from: Pixabay

I’m also tagging this blog post with Kylie’s Korner, because a lot of it relates to the story of her Lego progression.

This may seem like kind of random topic, but let me give you a little background:

I grew up with Legos. They occupied a lot of my time when I was a little kid. I believe that my time playing with Legos really helped me to develop my sense of understanding in 3 dimensional space, as well as nurturing my sense of creativity and problem-solving. As such, I would love my kids to play with Legos and encourage it (along with books and reading).

However, Legos have evolved significantly since my time.

For the most part, my time with Legos were with a bunch of smaller kits that eventually just got all mixed together. Some of the kits had instructions and some didn’t. Either way, most of those instructions were lost almost immediately. However, a friend of mine was much better about taking care of his Legos than me. He kept the instructions.

He also had what I consider one of the coolest Lego sets that ever existed, the Space Monorail. It came out in 1987 when we were 6 years old. Most of Christmas Break was spent putting it together. It wasthe coolest Lego Set ever since it moved on its own. However, it was very expensive, costing $155 on its release. $155 is a lot of money, and even more so when accounting for inflation, equal to approximately $330 in May 2017.

Either way, Legos continue to evolve with their Technic and Architecture lines being the most interesting to me. The Lego Ideas line is also very interesting.


Ok, so let’s refocus now.

My daughter is 4 years old, she turned 4 in May. As far as I know, Lego doesn’t create the super huge blocks that are available for infants and toddlers. For that particular age group, there is something called Mega bloks. My daughter has been playing with them since she was able to pick up any object.

I would recommend buying the Mega Bloks 80-Piece Big Building Bag. It comes in three varieties, Classic, Pink, and Trendy:

   

If you want to add something a little fun in, you may want to pick up the:

Mega Bloks Block Scooping Wagon Building Set

It’s this cute little truck thing that you can “roll over” the bloks with to pick them up. It comes in Pink and Red:

   

There are plenty of other little packs of Mega Bloks. However, I think the 80 pieces from the Classic bag are enough for most kids. Any more than that and you will be spending too much time picking up and putting away Mega Bloks all scattered around the floor.


When did she move on to other ones?

So, it’s kind of interesting, I started buying her Duplos around the time she turned 2. For those who don’t know, Duplos are like Legos for toddlers. The pieces aren’t small enough to be a choking hazard.

She has a bunch of little sets that she has built with me. I don’t remember them all, but here is a small sample:

LEGO DUPLO Creative Play All-in-One-Box-of-Fun 10572, Preschool, Pre-Kindergarten Large Building Block Toys for Toddlers

LEGO DUPLO My First Playhouse 10616, Preschool, Pre-Kindergarten Large Building Block Toys for Toddlers

However, my son, was born around the same time and before you know it, he was crawling around and knocking down her creations. So, for awhile Legos and Duplos were put on the back burner.


Is she ready for regular Legos yet?

Yes. I tested the waters when she was about 3 years old buying a few small regular Lego sets, but she wasn’t interested in them quite yet. It was kind of difficult for her to handle the small pieces. In addition to that, I was a little concerned that her little brother was going find one of the smaller pieces and eat them. For this reason, the Duplos and Regular Lego Sets were relegated to her room, away from her brother. Overall, she doesn’t spend much time in her room, preferring to spend her time in the living room with her little brother, so the Legos haven’t been getting much use.

However, she turned 4 in May and her dexterity has improved versus when she was 3. In addition, my son is older now and doesn’t really put things in his mouth anymore. Nonetheless, I still keep the Regular Legos downstairs away from my son.

Then one day we were playing with her Legos in her room and I noticed she had made something all by herself.

In fact, I had never seen her build it and neither had my wife. Apparently, she had woken up one night and couldn’t go back to sleep and decided to build something her Legos.


Oh wow… so now what?

Well…

I thought it was time for she and I to sit down and put together a little set together. Except this time we would be using the directions and I would only be helping her. She would need to put the pieces together herself.

This is set we used: LEGO Star Wars Resistance Trooper Battle Pack 75131

It’s actually a really cool little set, and there’s a lot of value there for only being $8.99 (as of 7/5/2017). That’s kind of unexpected because it’s Star Wars/Lego. However, maybe it’s a better value because there are no characters from the movies.

Long story short, she did very well for her first time. She had some difficulty with some of the smaller pieces, but she was able to follow the instructions reasonably well. I also tried to make her “find” pieces we needed. If she had trouble I would pick out 3 or 4 pieces which were the same color of the piece we needed and have her “find it”, to make it a little easier.


And now we’ve moved forward:

I bookmarked a bunch of Legos on Amazon and this is the next one on the list:

LEGO Disney Princess 41067 Belle’s Enchanted Castle Building Kit (374 Piece)

I think she’s all about Beauty and the Beast lately because of the live-action remake of the Disney Cartoon Movie with Emma Watson.

She has the Blu Ray and Doll Set:

   

She was super excited when the Lego set arrived and really wants to put it together with me. I’ll let you guys know how it goes.

If I remember I’ll try to put some pictures together of the progress and end result.


What are the other ones on your list?

Architecture:

LEGO Architecture 21019 The Eiffel Tower

LEGO Architecture New York City 21028, Skyline Collection

I think these sets are the best looking and best bang for your buck. However, that’s just my personal opinion.

Technic:

LEGO Technic Getaway Racer 42046 Building Kit

LEGO Technic Police Interceptor 42047 Building Kit

These are kind of cool because once you build them you just pull them back and they’ll race forward. Also, if you buy both the 42046 and 42047, you can use both sets to make a 1 big racer that utilizes both “pull-back” power sources, which supposedly is a little more powerful than just using one.

City:

LEGO City Trains Cargo Train 60052 Building Toy

This harkens back to my friend’s Space Monorail. This set seems like a lot of fun and runs by its own power, like an RC.

Dream Stuff:

LEGO Creator Expert Ferrari F40 Kit (1158 Piece) (10248)

I think this is a good bang for your buck “expert level” Lego set. At ~$100 and being 1158 pieces, I think that is good value.

It also looks really nice to just build and showcase on your desk (in my opinion). Maybe my daughter and I will build this when she is a little older.

LEGO TECHNIC Porsche 911 GT3 RS 42056

This is one of my favorite cars of all time and its creation was co-developed with Porsche. It’s a 1:8 scale and the level of detail to this car is amazing with 2700+ parts. They have definitely tried to be as true to the source material as possible. However, it’s $300, so it’s certainly not cheap. I’d love to build this someday and put it on the shelf above my desk. Maybe some day.


TL;DR

Legos are awesome.

Aside from being fun, I truly believe that they help develop 3 dimension spatial understanding, nurture creativity, and help kids follow instructions.

I think starting early with Mega Bloks, then moving to Duplos, and then moving to regular Legos is great.

Who wants to buy me the Porsche 911 GT3 RS for Christmas? It’s only $300!

Whatever Wednesdays Sensei

-Sensei

Agree? Disagree? Questions, Comments and Suggestions are welcome.

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About Sensei

A young attending physician trying to navigate the mine field that is life after medical school…


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