Do your kids love playing with LEGOs as much as mine do? They spend hours building and creating and then building some more. It’s so neat to watch them.
But, LEGOs aren’t just for fun and games. They’re also a great learning tool. Your kids can learn so much through play with these building bricks.
To help inspire you to integrate LEGOs into your homeschool math, here are five quick ways to use them.
And if you need a great all purpose set of LEGOs, I highly recommend this set:
Once you have your bricks, you’re ready to build. For some of the games you will also need:
- A pair of dice
Ready to play? Let’s get started!
1. 20 Brick Challenge (Counting)
Math starts off pretty simple in pre-k and kindergarten. Your kids need to know how to count.
This fun game lets them practice counting to 20. If your kids get stuck on the teen numbers like mine usually do at first, take the time to count with them.
Have your child select 20 random LEGO bricks. Count each piece out to ensure everyone has exactly 20. No more, no less.
Then, set the timer for 5 minutes and challenge everyone to build something. They can only use their 20 bricks, and there’s no trading.
When the time is up, have everyone stop building. Take turns sharing your creations.
Then switch builds and take apart that other person’s. As you do the deconstruction, count the pieces again. You could challenge slightly older kids to count backwards.
2. Guess My Category (Sorting)
Paying attention to details is an essential skill. So is observation. And being able to sort items effectively.
In this game, your child will practice all three of these things.
Dump some LEGOs out on the table. (Hint, dump them on a towel to make clean up easier…)
Have one person start picking out pieces and putting them into a pile. This is their “category” of bricks. Every brick that goes in this pile was selected for a reason.
The job of the other players is to guess what that reason is. Why is that brick going in, but not that one?
Can you figure out the sorting pattern?
When you think you have it, select another brick and try to add it to the pile. If the person says yes, explain what the category is. If the person says no, try again. You want to successfully add a brick to the pile.
Here are some examples of categories:
- Blue bricks
- Bricks with 6 nubs on top
- Flat bricks
- Bricks with special features (wheels, steering wheel, etc.)
- Bricks from a certain set
When one category is guessed, have another person begin a new one. Can you guess that?
Take turns sorting until everyone has had at least one turn.
3. Complete the Pattern (Patterning)
The colors on LEGOs are perfect for playing with patterns. With younger kids, start off with simple AB patterns (blue, red, blue, red, etc.). As they grow in their understanding, move on to more complicated patterns.
Try ABC patterns or AAB patterns. The possibilities are endless.
One simple activity is to build a quick pattern and then ask your child to continue it. Then let them start a pattern for you to finish.
Continue taking turns until everyone has had a couple of chances. You can also have your child draw the patterns they made, if they enjoy that sort of activity.
Note: You can also use cookie cutters for pattern play!
4. Toss the Dice & Add More LEGOs (Addition)
For this simple game, you’ll need a pair of dice and LEGOs.
On your turn, you:
- Roll the dice
- Say the number on each
- Add the two numbers together
- Select that many bricks
- Start building something
Then it’s the next person’s turn. They do the same thing.
On your next turn, you repeat the steps. Except, on the final step you simply add your new bricks to your existing build.
Continue taking turns until everyone has had 10 moves. Now stop and share with each other what you built.
For even more fun, consider adding themes to your builds. Then you can be more selective about what bricks you select. You could build:
- A building
- Something from nature
- An invention
- A robot
It’s a fun twist.
5. Take Some Down (Subtraction)
This is a fun deconstruction game. You will need one die for it, and a piece of paper and a pencil for each player.
But before you can deconstruct anything, you’ve got to construct something.
Everyone counts out 50 bricks. Then they build something. Whatever they want.
On your paper, write the number 50 at the top.
Now, it’s time to take it apart. One person rolls the die. Then, they write down the number under the 50, creating a math problem. They do the subtraction (see image below) and then remove that number from their build.
Then the next person goes.
Continue rolling, subtracting, and removing, until one person reaches 0.
You can decide if they have to roll the “exact” number or not. We don’t, but if you want to increase the competition and make the game last longer you can.
Do You Use LEGOs in Your Homeschool for Math?
I’d love to hear how else you integrate these fun building blocks into your homeschool routines.