Category: Learning with LEGOs

{LEGO Build Challenge} : Pet

This week the kiddos were challenged to build a pet.  The pet could be one they already have, one they want or an imaginary pet.  It was really fun to see the kids get creative.

LEGO Build Challenges

A Horse

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A Dragon

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A bullet shooting dog

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A Loch Ness Monster

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A bird ??? ( I can’t remember them all)

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Have you created any LEGO pets?

{LEGO Build Challenge} : Bird

With today being the first day of spring I thought it only appropriate that the kids build a bird today.  This was a pretty quick build because the kids were in a hurry to head outside and enjoy the beautiful day.  Before we started the build we talked about the different characteristics of birds.

LEGO Build Challenges

1.  You can use any LEGOs you wish.
2. Your bird must have wings.
3.  Your bird must have a beak.

As an additional challenge, I told the kids to see if they could make their bird move.

Thing 1 built a bird where it’s head moved.

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Thing 2’s bird head, wings and tail feather moved.

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The other bird bobbed it’s head.

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What have you built with LEGOs lately?

{LEGO Build Challenge} : Bridge

This week’s building challenge at our LEGO group was to build a bridge.

LEGO Build Challenges

1.  Can use any LEGOs you wish.
2. Your bridge must be at least 1 inch off the ground.
3.  Your bridge must connect two things.  Examples: mountain, island, building, house, etc.
4.  Your bridge must be big enough for a mini figure to travel across.

This week we decided to make this an individual challenge, so that everyone could build the bridge they wanted.  By having each kid work on their own bridge they were really able to showcase their creativitiy.  Here are the kids’ creations.

Thing 1’s Build

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Thing 2’s Build

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Have you built a LEGO bridge? Leave a link in the comments below so we can see your creation.

{LEGO Build Challenge} : Creature

Since our move from Texas to Georgia the boys and I have been trying to connect with local homeschoolers, but we haven’t had the best of luck so far.  We have also been looking for some type of LEGO class, similar to the LEGO We Do Robotics class they were involved with in Texas.  Almost two weeks ago, I spent half the morning scouring the internet, once again, for ways for us to get connected with other homeschoolers here in Georgia.  When suddenly it hit me, we should start a LEGO group of our own.

I would love to do a LEGO We Do Robotics group, but I can’t afford to buy the kits.  So instead, with help of the boys, we decided to create a LEGO Build Challenge group.

How it works:
We get together each week.  To start, I give the kids about 5 minutes to build whatever they want.  When the five minutes is up the kids take about 30 seconds and share what they have built.  This gives everyone time to get there are get settled and start to focus on the activity for the day.

Once everyone has shared their 5 minute build.  I introduce the topic for the day and give them the rules of the build.  They then divide into pairs and get to work.  Depending on what the build challenge determines how much time they have to build.  After the time is up, the groups take a minute or two and share what they built.

This week was our first week and they boys had a great time and are excited about next week.  They were also able to meet several other boys around their own age.

LEGO Build Challenges

This Weeks Challenge:  Create a Creature

Since this was the first week and I was unsure how everything was going to go and how it was all going to work, I went with a very open and broad topic.

1. Can use any LEGOs you wish.
2.  They had to name their creature.
3.  They had to tell us what it eats.
4. They had to tell us about its habitat.

I even provided them with a handout that had the rules, questions to help them complete all of the rules and a place where they could draw a picture of their build.

Our Creatures:

A triple headed snake

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Another snake

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A Ladybug. (Thing 1 and his partner built this)

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I really think this was a great experience for these homeschooled kids.  For one they all seemed to have a great time, but it also allowed them the opportunity to…

  •  Speak in front of a group.
  • Use creative and critical thinking.
  • Work collaboratively.  This is probably where my boys struggled the most, because they were not working with each other, but with other kids.  So they had to learn how to handle differences of opinions because, at our house they usually all agree.

Each week I hope to share with you our LEGO Build group challenges, maybe it can inspire the LEGO lover in your life.


Using LEGOs to Learn About Pulleys

Similar to learning about levers with LEGOs we also talked about pulleys using LEGOs.  For the pulleys we used wheels without the rubber tire part on them.

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The setup was similar to what I did with levers.  We discussed the definition and parts of a pulley.  I then had them create the pulleys.  Sadly I didn’t get as many pictures because I was busy helping/holding the pulley creations.

I am surprised just how well the whole LEGO simple machine lessons have gone over and how much the boys have retained from these two lessons.  I figured it would be a hit, but it has exceeded my expectations.


Using LEGOs to Build Levers

We love some LEGOs around here.  They are played with every day.  Thus when it was time to talk about levers as part of simple machines for science, I knew we had to use LEGOs. 

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I started the lesson by giving the boys the definition of levers and talking about the three parts of a lever.  I was surprised how easily they understood the difference between the effort and the load and how they act on the lever.  Next, I introduced each type of lever and drew an example for them on a whiteboard.  I then asked the them to create an example of the lever out of LEGOs.

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Thing 1 was able to create each lever, a much better lever than I did, in less time.

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After each type of lever was built I had the boys draw an example on a simple worksheet I created to further reinforce the concept.  At this time we also talked about real life example of each type of lever.  Thing 1 blew me away with the examples he came up with there were some I didn’t even think about.  For example, he realized that the act of him throwing a ball in a windmill fashion was similar to a third class lever.

How have you used LEGOs in your school?