Building History with Legos

I really did not want the Legos in the school room but we had no place to put them. The little plastic bricks were in this room before we transformed it into our school room and to my dismay there was no other room to lodge them. I knew they would be a nuisance and I’d constantly be stepping on them. Sometimes I think they were designed to drive parents crazy…those bricks make me a little nuts sometimes.

However, Legos have become an almost daily staple in our school. Sometimes the kids use them for math manipulatives. We have one set of Math U See blocks but with three scholars using the blocks sometimes (maybe more than sometimes) there are not enough to go around. Reluctantly, I agreed to let my oldest use the Legos during math time and it worked out well, so I let up on the “no Legos during school time rule.”

We use Story of the World for our history lessons. Usually I read the chapter to the kids and they work on the corresponding coloring page. Early on, one of the chapters suggested building the pyramids of Egypt out of Legos. The kids loved the idea and they built tons of little pyramids all over the place. Then they wanted to use them for every chapter of history. I wasn’t sold on the idea at first. A few weeks later the kids started building history projects on their own. They built a ziggurat, the Great Library of Nineveh, Carthage, the Labyrinth and King Minos’ Palace over the Labyrinth!! After seeing them build the history we were studying each week I let up on the no Lego rule…mostly. The last set they built was the Great Wall of China complete with attacking Mongols and books burning in the Market Place. They worked so hard to include nearly every detail from the chapter (chapter 32 of volume 1) that I didn’t bother to test. They obviously knew the material.

I never expected Legos to be an almost daily part of homeschooling. The plastic bricks were not a part of my vision for educating my children. Sometimes I get caught up on what I think home education should look like and at first those visions looked a lot like my public schooled experience. I’m learning to let go of those early ideas and let the kids lead me in the way they want to learn. Our rookie year is almost up and I feel like I’ve learned more than my children. I’ve learned more about them individually, that I can teach math, that my husband is an amazing man (sorry…I just could not find the right expression to describe the joy and support I find in him), and that when Jesus calls me to completely change my life…He’ll not only see me through it but will make it the best year of my life.

I still get really irritated when I step on Legos….

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