Lindsay Foster is a BISD Learning Technologies Coach and was named a 2018 LEGO Education US Master Educator. LEGO Education US Master Educators are a new community of early learning through high school educators, and that the program will soon open to educators around the world. Educators across the U.S. applied to join the voluntary ambassador program and the new members represent local school districts from across the country. Master Educators use LEGO Education solutions in their classrooms and embody the LEGO Education mission of enabling success for all students through hands-on learning experiences.
I recently attended the first Meet Up of the 2018 (inaugural) LEGO Education US Master Educator program in Chicago, IL. It was an incredible experience that allowed me to be a learner, rather than an educator, and I went with the full intent to absorb as many ideas from the 109 other folks who were joining me in the experience this year. The experience exceeded my expectations and I benefited greatly from the opportunity as will the Burleson ISD educators and students with whom I work daily and potentially the other educators and students across the great state of Texas, within the United States and beyond.
While I have many treasures to share, I would like to focus on one of the first tasks we were given at our Meet Up event – make a duck. This might sound simple but consider the directions: 1) reach into your bag and pull out the small package of LEGO bricks, 2) open the package and 3) make a duck. Those were the directions. Oh, and did I mention, there were only six bricks. Make a duck with SIX bricks.
In approximately five minutes, there were eighty-two different ducks circulating the room. (NOTE: Not all 110 LEGO Education US Master Educators were able to attend the Meet Up in Chicago.) There were no two that were alike… and yet, they were ALL ducks. Tall ducks. Short ducks. Lean ducks. Chubby ducks. Even stacks of ducks.
What was the point of this activity? First, it allowed every person to be creative and to think critically about construction. I pulled my duck apart at least twice trying to get his/her/its “feet” in the “right” spot. Second, it allowed us, as educators, to experience the opportunity of recalling that there are MANY ways to solve a problem… just as there are at least eighty-two ways to create a duck. Finally, it reminded us of the joy of play because there was discussion, laughter, giggling, and happy noise for those five or so minutes as every person created and the discussion that followed – compliments and questions – as each person shared his or her duck with others was just as valuable and impactful. All of this because of six bricks…
If you were given six bricks, what would you CREATE? What would you SHARE? Why wait… go raid six random LEGO bricks from a kid (or an adult) that you know and make something and share it in the comments. #SixBrickStory
For more information on Six Brick Challenge, check out the LEGO Foundation resource here: https://www.legofoundation.com/en/learn-how/knowledge-base/six-bricks/