Lego Resources in Class
This post was originally written to celebrate the second birthday of Inclusiveteach.com than with a post about Lego! Lego toys are still popular and with the increasing use of Lego therapy even more widely used in education than when I wrote this blog
Lego Resources in the Classroom
Lego is one of the most easily adaptable resources a teacher can have regardless of the needs of their class. Yes, it is pretty expensive, but it is almost indestructible. You can always try and persuade some parents or colleagues to donate a couple of piles. Although it is almost guaranteed to have a pencil or something in it. In case I haven’t sold it enough – no classroom should be without at least one box. There are always the “compatible” brands if your budget doesn’t stretch to buying lego sets for schools.
If you are lucky you may be able to get some sets that link with your topic. For our space topic, I splashed out on a space shuttle. The next topic I taught was “Transport” and as long as you have a few wheels you are ready to start building. Apart from STEM and free play activities Lego is also great to use in structured communication sessions. Especially for PECS or AAC (Augmentative Assistive Communication) users.
Incorporating LEGO Activities in the Classroom
LEGO bricks are not just a popular toy, but also a powerful learning tool. They offer a hands-on, engaging, and flexible resource that can enhance learning across a range of subjects. Here are some innovative ways you can incorporate LEGO activities into your classroom.
1. Math Concepts
LEGO bricks can be used to teach and reinforce a variety of math concepts:
- Counting and Basic Operations: Younger students can use LEGO bricks for counting, addition, and subtraction. The bricks can also be grouped in different ways to introduce concepts of multiplication, division, and fractions.
- Geometry: The various shapes and sizes of LEGO bricks lend themselves well to lessons on area, perimeter, volume, and spatial reasoning. Students can build 2D or 3D shapes and calculate their dimensions.
- Patterns and Sequences: Use different coloured bricks to create and extend patterns, or to explore sequences and series in a visual way.
2. Science and Engineering
LEGO bricks can bring science and engineering concepts to life:
- Structures and Stability: Challenge students to build the tallest tower, the strongest bridge, or an earthquake-proof building. These activities can lead to discussions about structural integrity and the forces acting on structures.
- Simple Machines: Use LEGO Technic sets to explore simple machines like levers, pulleys, and gears.
- Robotics and Coding: LEGO Mindstorms or LEGO Boost sets provide an introduction to robotics and coding, allowing students to design, build, and program their own robots.
3. Literacy Skills
You can also use LEGO bricks to support literacy development:
- Storytelling: Students can create scenes from a story using LEGO bricks and mini-figures. This can help with comprehension and retelling skills. They can also create their own stories in LEGO form and write about them.
- Building Vocabulary: Assign a theme (e.g., city, park, farm) and have students build a related scene. They can then label their creations, building both their vocabulary and their spelling skills.
4. Social Skills
LEGO activities can be done in pairs or groups to foster teamwork and communication. LEGO also offers a structured program called LEGO Therapy that uses collaborative LEGO-building tasks to build social skills in children who struggle with social communication.
5. Art and Creativity
Allow students to use LEGO bricks as a medium for creative expression. They could recreate famous artworks, design their own creations, or even use LEGO to create stop-motion animations.
Lego Education AAC Resources
When you are teaching maths or want to link numeracy into a topic there are loads of activities online for using building blocks, from counting to writing letters or numbers using blocks.
I have made a simple set of instruction sheets that can be cut and laminated. You can easily ramp up the complexity. You can use them for Lego therapy as well. Included in the Lego tasks InPrint 3 File or click the image to download the image file.
Here is an awesome tray for sorting your pieces and building on your lap. My daughter loves using this (You can see her creation below) You can buy a similar tray/table here.