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Friday, September 16, 2011

Homeschool LEGO Club & Tips on How to Start One In Your Area


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How to Start a Lego Club in your Area #Lego #legoclub by ASliceOfHomeschoolPie.com

It's that time of the year...the start of a new Homeschool LEGO Club season! 

This is the second year that I have coordinated a Homeschool LEGO Club.  It all began with a conversation I had with a friend about another parent starting a club in another city.  Knowing how much my children love LEGOs, I thought it would be a good idea to start one in our area.

I belong to several homeschool email groups, so I emailed everyone letting them know of my desire to begin a Homeschool LEGO Club and asked that they contact me if their children were interested in participating.

How to Start a Lego Club in your Area #Lego #legoclub by ASliceOfHomeschoolPie.com



The first year I had about 20 children. This year there are about 22 in my group.  There were so many children that wanted to participate, that a friend of mine decided to start her own group.  Today both groups met together with a total of about 30 kids.

How to Start a Lego Club in your Area #Lego #legoclub by ASliceOfHomeschoolPie.com

The cost to participate in the LEGO Club for the school year (September through May) is $5.00/child.  This money is used to purchase the LEGOs for the group.  (I purchased the containers using my own money.) These are the boxes I purchased: Sterilite 2194-2263 Sterilite 28 Quart Clear Storage Box 1 and Sterilite Small Flip Top Storage Box, Pack of 12.

How to Start a Lego Club in your Area #Lego #legoclub by ASliceOfHomeschoolPie.com

We meet one day a month.  (Last year we met twice a month, but parents agreed that once a month would be better.)

At the end of each meeting I bring the boxes of LEGOs home with me.  This year my friend and I will share the LEGOs so that she can have them for her meetings.

How to Start a Lego Club in your Area #Lego #legoclub by ASliceOfHomeschoolPie.com

Each meeting will be a bit different.  For our very first meeting, I asked the kids to build something at home based on a particular theme.  Last year they were to create something that they would want to have with them if they were stuck on an island.

This year the theme was military defense vehicles or machines, and airplanes.  I love seeing what each child creates!

How to Start a Lego Club in your Area #Lego #legoclub by ASliceOfHomeschoolPie.com

I had each child first introduce themselves and then while they held up their LEGO creations, I had the other children guess what the item was and/or how they thought it was to be used.

The children LOVE guessing!  It's fun to see all their hands rise up at once.


How to Start a Lego Club in your Area #Lego #legoclub by ASliceOfHomeschoolPie.com

Once the children were finished with their presentations, they had "free build" time.  The containers are passed around and each child starts building either by themselves, or with their friends.  Then they play with them.

How to Start a Lego Club in your Area #Lego #legoclub by ASliceOfHomeschoolPie.com

As I mentioned before, each meeting will be different.  Some will be "free building" meetings; others will be based on various themes.  Sometimes the themes will be given in advance, and they can build at home and bring it to share, other times they will not know what the theme is until the day of the meeting.

How to Start a Lego Club in your Area #Lego #legoclub by ASliceOfHomeschoolPie.com

I have the children suggest themes that interest them.  A few they shared today include pirates, castles, and Star Wars.

How to Start a Lego Club in your Area #Lego #legoclub by ASliceOfHomeschoolPie.com

How to Start a Lego Club in your Area #Lego #legoclub by ASliceOfHomeschoolPie.com

Tips for Coordinating a LEGO Club:
  • Find a location.  Our group meets at a local library.  
  • Decide how often you would like to hold your meetings, including the day of the week and time.  (Changing our meetings to Thursdays vs. Fridays helped to increase membership.)
  • Determine what the age range will be.
  • Establish a membership fee.  The first year in addition to the $5.00 per child fee, I also asked that parents bring $5.00 worth of LEGOs to the club meetings once a month.  Some parents chose to give me the money, others donated additional LEGOs.
  • If you would like the children to take home some of their LEGO creations, you may want to charge a higher fee.  The group that met in a different city I believe charged $5/meeting.
  • Once you've gathered this information, share your interest in hosting a LEGO Club with other homeschoolers through any homeschool groups you belong to
  • Create a LEGO Club email list and email the members with all necessary information concerning meeting location and meeting dates.
  • Prior to your first meeting, collect all fees and order your LEGOs.  I suggest getting a LEGO VIP card so that you can get LEGO points for your purchases which you can then use towards future purchases.  
  • Purchase any necessary containers to hold the LEGO pieces. 
Websites that offer LEGO building themes/ideas:

LEGO Education
LEGO Quest

LEGO Museum:
Toy and Plastic Brick Museum

I hope I have created a desire in you to begin a LEGO Club in your area!  If you have any questions, just leave me a comment.

You may also be interested in reading:

Lego Bricks Must Have for Your Lego Club

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    26 comments:

    1. Christina@toshowthemjesus.comSeptember 20, 2011 at 3:31 PM

      I was just telling a friend that I wished our homeschool group had a lego club. I guess that since I read this I need to be the one to start it:) Thanks for all the great ideas!

      ReplyDelete
    2. ASliceofHomeschoolPieSeptember 20, 2011 at 4:09 PM

      Your welcomed! I had an email come through from a lady who coordinated a Lego club in her area and she charges $3/meeting.

      ReplyDelete
    3. Stopping by from the Hip HS Hop. We participated in a couple online lego assignments, but I've been wondering about starting a group within our co-op. Thanks for sharing what has worked for you!

      ReplyDelete
    4. Lovely blog, I'll be subscribing in my reader. We host a F.I.R.S.T. club and Jr F.I.R.S.T. club - it can get crazy.

      ReplyDelete
    5. ASliceofHomeschoolPieSeptember 30, 2011 at 12:57 AM

      Do you host it as homeschoolers? I looked at the website and it seemed like the events were mostly hosted at schools.

      ReplyDelete
    6. ASliceofHomeschoolPieSeptember 30, 2011 at 12:58 AM

      Thanks for stopping by!

      ReplyDelete
    7. Denise Reynolds-LaubacherMarch 17, 2012 at 1:21 PM

      Thanks for sharing your experience - I'm doing a Lego Learning Club to try to launch some interest in our middle school age group at our co-op - which will include some history of Lego, designing/art/engineering aspects as well as enjoying team building, solo free time building.

      ReplyDelete
    8. ASliceofHomeschoolPieMarch 18, 2012 at 7:16 AM

      Denise, that sounds great! I wish you success and lots of fun!

      ReplyDelete
    9. This has inspired me to start a club in our area. How fun!

      ReplyDelete
    10. What do you do with the Legos when the club no longer meets? I started one but I've just been bringing our large collection of Legos from home each time. I thought about having people contribute to purchase more Legos, but then what happens to the Legos in a few years? I'd hate to have people pay for them and then I end up keeping them, KWIM?

      ReplyDelete
    11. ASliceofHomeschoolPieNovember 9, 2013 at 2:56 PM

      Hi Candiss! When I held our club I had the parents donate Legos, but I also used our personal blocks so as to have more to work with. When we stopped the Lego Club meetings, I kept the blocks. In my opinion, I don't believe anyone minded; maybe they felt it was a way to give back for the time I was investing in their children?

      I never asked for a large amount of donation (to purchase blocks), so I think that helped too. :-)

      ReplyDelete
    12. Thank you for the information. How much time did you allow at each meeting?

      ReplyDelete
    13. ASliceofHomeschoolPieNovember 17, 2013 at 7:18 PM

      I believe we met from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

      ReplyDelete
    14. Hi,
      I am so glad I came across your website. I am a lego novice. I never played with legos as a child. I grew up in Africa and I knew some families had legos but we just never had it. We played more outdoor type games. Anyway, I have been researching STEM curriculum for my six year old and discovered that there are so many neat inventions that can be made with legos! I love the fact that you can use legos to introduce youngsters to the concept of engineering at an early age. I would like to start a lego after school program in Africa but since I personally never played with them, I feel handicapped. I have been researching the lego website and have found that they have curriculum for different educational grades. Is this the best route to take? How do I decide what designs the children should be building and what parts/kinds of legos I should purchase?

      Any advice is deeply appreciated.
      I tried to comment with my Google account and/or Wordpress but I am having trouble. I am therefore commenting as Anonymous.

      Thanks,
      Christine

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Christine,

        When I began the Lego Club, I did a search for words such as "Lego Building Ideas" to come up with different ideas. I also asked the children to come up with some ideas. Here's a website I found that may help you. http://www.buildtogether.com/

        This website allows you to choose designs by theme, time, and age.

        I knew that we needed regular building blocks mixed in with wheels, so that is what I bought for the club.

        Hope this helps you.

        Delete
      2. Hi Clara,

        Thanks for taking the time to respond. Yes this information helps.

        Christine

        Delete
    15. Thanks for sharing this! We are thinking of starting one up next year. This was such a big help!!!

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. How fun! If you need any tips or advice, just let me know.

        Delete
    16. My son loves playing with Legos. A group like this would be so much fun for him.

      ReplyDelete
    17. This comment has been removed by the author.

      ReplyDelete
    18. Is there a way to estimate how many Legos are needed per child attending a Lego program? We are in the planning phase of starting an after-school club at our public library, and this seems to be the hardest part so far...planning on how many to purchase.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. I tried to answer this question in my new post. Here's a link: http://www.asliceofhomeschoolpie.com/2014/03/Lego-Bricks-Must-Have-for-Lego-Club.html

        Delete
    19. Such a great idea, my son would love something like this! Spotted your link on GTTuesday! Thanks for sharing- love it!

      ReplyDelete
    20. Such a awesome idea, I know a few adults would would also love to join/start a lego club

      ReplyDelete
    21. Thank you so much for the tips. I've been searching for a club in my area to no avail, so I think I will take up the challenge and start one up myself.

      ReplyDelete

    I would love to hear from you! Please comment below.