Thursday, December 3, 2009

Don't Give Up on Building

The New York Times had a story yesterday covering the rise of construction toys and the accompanying lament of parents vexed by large sets (of primarily LEGO bricks) that required them to assemble too many parts.

The thing I couldn't stop thinking about while reading the article is how much the parents sounded like children presented with a difficult challenge or chore. This is too hard...I don't like this...I don't get it... But the parents don't have anyone to tell them to just give it a try and see what they can accomplish. Because as parents, we get to pull the plug whenever we want.

So allow me to fill that role for a moment. If parents can push past that gut reaction that LEGO sets are too complicated, they might discover the same joy that they had playing with bricks as a child. Some of the most active adult fans of LEGO that I know were in your position just a few years ago. It was all because they didn't give up...and they ate their vegetables.


Anonymous said...

It boggles my mind that people are so concerned with instant gratification that they can't take the time to put something together. The building is half the fun of playing with LEGO. It's sad that many adults lose sight of this. One of my favorite sets to build was the 5,195 piece UCS Millennium Falcon.

Unknown said...

When I was a kid a "really large" Lego set was 300-400 pieces. Parents buying ~600-piece sets (like in the NY Times article) when they apparently don't have any building experience are asking for frustration. Kids would do better to work up from 80-piece fire engines, not jumping right to the relatively huge sets that, unfortunately, dominate most of the licensed sets market that attract buyers.