The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

November 10, 2012

Pittsburg library seeking Legos in order to add new program

PITTSBURG, Kan. — The Pittsburg Public Library is looking for Legos.

The library wants to add a Lego Builderspace program, open to ages 8 to 18, starting in December. The library is requesting the community’s help in accumulating enough Legos to launch the program.

An adult component may be added later.

“We're excited,” library spokeswoman AnnDee Peterson said. “A lot of libraries have started Lego groups, and we want to do it for all ages in Pittsburg.”

Provided the library gets enough donations of the small plastic bricks, the meeting room will be open and stocked so that young builders may create Lego projects that will stay at the library. No sign-up is required, but participants must complete a form when they arrive. Guidelines will be provided by library staff about Lego project size limits.

Participants who are interested may enter their creation in the library’s Lego contest, which will be judged by local Lego enthusiasts. Builders, friends and family will be invited to a Lego open house.

The connection between Legos and books is more obvious than library patrons might at first think, library officials say.

Experts such as Dorothy Singer, a senior research scientist at Yale University’s Department of Psychology and Child Study Center, have found that promoting play contributes to early literacy development by increasing attention span, and improving memory, creativity, language and vocabulary skills.

Her studies also found that playing with Legos improves mathematical thinking, scientific reasoning and problem solving.

A study published in the journal “Science and Children” compared learning the traditional way, by textbook, with learning through the use of hands-on tools such as Legos. The study found that tactile and kinesthetic learning increases student understanding.

Those who would like to donate Legos may call the library at 620-231-8110.

‘Play well’

“Lego” is an abbreviation of two Danish words, “leg godt,” meaning “play well.” The Lego Group was founded in 1932 by Ole Kirk Kristiansen. The company has passed from father to son and is now owned by Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen, a grandchild of the founder. The company is based in Billund, Denmark.

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