Tips for Starting Lego Kits with Preschoolers

This is Lilah (age 2) doing her first ever Lego kit, with big brother Luke (age 4) there giving her pointers!  Luke is soooo into Lego kits that Lilah REALLY wanted her own to try.  We started her off with this Lego Friends kit.  One of Luke’s favorite kits was Cars Flo’s V8 Cafe.  Of course we supervise carefully and help as needed.  Luke started doing kits a few months before turning 4, and now that he’s 4-1/4, he can do kits for ages 5-12 and 7-12 with almost no help from us at all.  Lego kits are GREAT for teaching following directions and providing LOTS of fine motor skills practice, among other things!  I personally recommend Lego kits over the Lego Duplo kits just because the couple of Duplo kits we have did not come with the nice step-by-step instructions like the Lego kits do, but rather just had overall pictures of what you could build, which has actually been harder for the kids to do even though the pieces are easier to handle.

An Easy Way to Sort Lego
One thing we’ve found really helpful is to sort the Lego pieces by color and/or type prior to starting to build.  I’ve found that this chip and dip tray — which we also use with our light table, too, because it’s clear — is THE perfect Lego sorter.  I found it in the Target dollar spot awhile back.  We dump the bag of pieces in the center section or on the table, and L&L always start by sorting their pieces.  Sorting is such a GREAT preschool skill all on its own; it gives the child practice categorizing items by color and/or type which will definitely help with future learning, AND it is a “real life” way to practice it since the sorting is for a REAL purpose.  If the pieces are sorted beforehand, it makes it MUCH easier for little ones to find the piece pictured in the Lego directions.  Plus, if the child needs to stop building mid-kit, it’s really easy to clean up; just put away all the extra pieces by sticking the whole tray in a safe spot.  When the child is ready to begin again, they can just pick right back up where they left off!

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Genny Upton

A former teacher turned stay at home mom to two preschool aged children. Creator (and writer) at In Lieu of Preschool and Parent Teach Play. Currently publishing my first children's picture book!

  • Tallya says:

    That’s a great idea! My 4 1/2 year old is so “all over the place” that the few times I tried to get him to try building with legos he just didn’t know where to start with that big pile of legos in front of him! Will be trying it your way today, thanks for the tips!

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