Life Lessons I Have Learned From Playing With Legos With Kids
If you have chlidren, especially boys, you probably have played with legos.These little colorful interlocking blocks have been around for many years and have entertained many children. Adults enjoy them too.
I have spent many hours creating unique structures out of the tiny bricks, and when you add wheels and other interesting pieces, the number of cleverly constructed creations are endless. While playing legos with my family I've collaborated, created, and thought. Some life lessons have come to mind.
In order for a structure to be stable, it must be constructed with balance--this becomes quite apparent as one builds with legos. Even if the legos interlock tightly, without balance the structure is subject to falling apart; so it is with life. If too much time or energy is put in to one area of your life, the other areas suffer. For example, the workaholic who spends 70 hours a week at their job loses touch with friends and family, and before long, relationships crumble--just like a lego structure that's not balanced.
Never Underestimate the Intelligence of a Child.
Frequently I am amazed at how my son can figure out how to get things together in a functional way long before I do. Even though a child may not display intelligence in a typical fashion, don't be fooled. Every child has a unique gift, and sometimes society fails to recognize a particular talent. Some of those little lego builders may not be getting A's in school, but they could surprise us all and grow up to be great engineers or artists.
A Variety of Pieces Makes the World Interesting.
When my son got his first lego set, it was all little bricks. He made many different structures with the bricks, and then he discovered you could get lego sets that contained wheels and other interesting shapes. Then his world of legos exploded! He made vehicles, and then he got lego figures to drive the vehicles. For him, the possibilities were endless.
Similarly, life is more interesting when you incorporate variety. Think about friends. How boring life would be if you and your friends all had the same interests and the same opinions. Conversations would be routine and dull, and activities would be predictable. Variety does spive life up a bit.
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Other People Have Good Ideas.
Sometimes in life it's easy to overlook the ideas of others because you're so set on your own idea, and you fail to consider what others have to say. I have seen this as our family has sat on the floor playing legos. Someone comes up with an idea on how to build the best castle with certain bricks, and someone else may have another idea that gets overlooked.
It's important to hear ideas from everyone, even if an individual is younger and less experienced. Some great ideas that seem a bit farfetched have been conceived by people who have been laughed at. Many people thought we would never send a man to the moon, and now we discuss colonizing Mars. It is important to listen to ideas from everyone.
Imagination is a Wonderful Thing.
Although many lego sets come with instructions on how to construct a particular structure, designing your own is just as fun. As children piece the bricks and other bits together, interesting designs develop. Children tend to be open to trying designs that spring forth from their own imagination. They don't feel limited by a set of directions printed on a piece of paper. They experiment.
And what would life be like without people who are willing to experiment? Those who are not limited by boundaries and let their imaginations go are the people who create great art, make important discoveries, and question how we can make our world better. Imagination leads to great things, and perhaps we could all learn to use our imagination a bit more.
Adults Should Play Like Kids Once in a while.
As we grow up and become responsible adults, we forget about the joys of being a child. And as this happpens, we lose some of qualities that make children interesting. Children are open to possibilities because their imagination has no limits. They can build a lego tower so tall it reaches the sky. Perhaps, as we play legos with children, we as adults can open our minds to more possibilities and focus less on boundaries and limitations.
I still enjoy playing legos; it remiinds me about important lessons I have a tendency to forget.