Let's Learn with Lego!

Having fun with Lego during recess!

Photo of Cicely Day
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Update: Lego Recess was not what I thought it would be at first.  Children love Legos and they want to build anything their minds come up with. The prototyping phase has taught me a lot about how children play and how you design activities around how they play to get the learning done.

Lego recess was about adding STEM to recess. It was also about getting teachers, parents and community involved. Through prototyping, I learned that students needed time to experience Legos freely and with STEM activities. Teachers and community is so important in making Lego Recess successful. Our students need adults encouragement but students need to see that adults love to play too.  

Through this process, I saw that our students worked together to make either a car or bridge. They also helped each other with finding parts, sharing ideas, and a giggle or two. Problem solving, team work, and planning happened when the Legos came out. These are some of the things that make STEM so important and why Lego Recess is needed.

First version: During recess time, students and staff can have fun with Legos. They can build on the Lego wall or have fun with Lego challenge cards. Students can create movies in Lego Movie Maker. Staff and students can team up together and create a Lego project. 

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Photo of Erin Quinn

What about DURING class time? Could Lego be used in learning too, do you think?

Photo of Cicely Day

I believe during class time could work also. It could be a great end of the day kind of thing and  students can do group builds based on a restriction/question or depending on the grade a way to assess math. Such as making patterns or counting. You can use Duplos for smaller hands.

Photo of Erin Quinn

What about a Lego design challenge?

For example: have students view this photo gallery: http://www.wimp.com/25-of-the-most-unsafe-and-surprising-walks-to-school-on-planet-earth/?dsk=1&mobi=1/

Design challenge: Using the materials given (Legos), create a structure that will transport students to school safely in one of the scenarios in the photo.

Photo of Cicely Day

Yes something like that would be great and they can also learn about coding without a computer:
This can be done individually or in pairs. This can be adapted depending on the grade you teach. The goal is to get your lego person out of the maze with the least amount of code. This is done in phases depending on age and understanding. It is a great way to introduce coding, problem solving and critical thinking skills. Plus you get to build a maze with Lego
I think any opportunity to have students build structures(engineer designing) to solve real world problems is invaluable and fun. 

Photo of Erin Quinn

Great idea, Cicely! Love that idea of coding with Lego! I think there's great potential for a meaningful and impactful task here. I'd love to see where you go next with it! :)