LEGO is one of the most versatile and accessible building toys on the planet. In addition to regular LEGO, you can find LEGO Duplo for toddlers, LEGO Juniors for younger children, Technic for the complex builder, and the Mindstorms system for programmable LEGO robotics.
You can build specific models using sets with instructions or you can use those same bricks, or mixed packs and boxes, to create something from your imagination.
If your child needs some inspiration, or you want them to discover builds with a purpose, then check out these 51 LEGO building ideas, complete with video instructions.
What Can You Build with LEGO?
Most people are familiar with LEGO sets. They have everything you need to create a specific model, but LEGO bricks are also used in incredibly diverse ways by builders around the world. Extensive online communities exist, dedicated to the process and results of building with LEGO.
Some LEGO building projects for kids result in models created solely for the pleasure of the process, while other finished items are placed on a shelf. There are builders who enjoy the challenge of figuring out how to create or recreate a particular item, place, or person, while others like to build items with which they can interact.
Your little builder might create a figure or a useful household item, like a desk organizer. My son once made a jewelry box for me out of his spare LEGO parts.
You can even use LEGO as a teaching aid.
Watch the full playlist from the LEGO channel.
LEGO Building Ideas for Kids
If you or your child are looking for LEGO activities for kids, you’re in the right place. These are 51 of our favorite LEGO building ideas.
Benefits of LEGO for Kids
Building with LEGO is not just about clicking bricks together. LEGO builds have tangible play benefits for both children and adults.
Fine Motor Skills
Using LEGOs requires us to pick pieces up and click them together to build our creations. That means playing with LEGO can aid in the development of your child’s fine motor skills.
For smaller children who are too young to play with regular LEGO, there is Duplo. This is a range of larger-scale bricks that allow your child to build, create, and develop their fine motor skills, without the choking hazard of the regular line (4).
Spatial reasoning, in simple terms, allows you to create a mental image of an object and apply that knowledge in a practical way (5). LEGO helps to develop strong spatial reasoning skills.
When you build a model from a set, you use these skills to look at the instructions, choose your LEGO pieces, and put them in the correct place. When you free build, you must be able to visualize what size and shape of pieces will fit in your models.
Building a model is part of the fun. Playing with their creations provides an opportunity for children to flex their imagination.
LEGO allows your child to take something that exists in their imagination and create it in the real world. This is incredibly satisfying. Children who are successful in creating LEGO models can experience the boost in confidence and self-esteem that comes with success in any activity.
What Is the Age Limit for LEGO?
In general, the age ranges are:
LEGO® DUPLO®: 1 to 5 Years
These sets contain large format figures, bricks, accessories, and special, pre-formed and shaped bricks. Some bricks have printed elements such as animal faces.
LEGO® Juniors Sets: 4 to 8 Years
These sets contain regular size LEGO elements as well as some larger pre-formed pieces such as walls. They are designed specifically to be more simple builds for children who are new to LEGO.
All Other LEGO®: It’s Complicated
Basic boxes of LEGO bricks are rated as 4 years and older. This is a safety guide since the size of the bricks makes them a potential choking hazard.
Beyond the “minimum safe age” element, LEGO sets are labeled with age range guidelines that reflect the size and complexity of the build. So you will see sets with 4 years and older, 8 to 12 years, and 16 years and older.
This doesn’t mean that an 8-year-old cannot be given a set rated 12+. Instead, it is an indication that the 12+ set will require a particular degree of experience with LEGO building techniques. An inexperienced builder might find the set too difficult or frustrating.
Build a Family Hobby
Building with LEGO presents an opportunity to boost your child’s creativity, self-confidence, and brainpower. Not only that, LEGO is available for kids as young as one year and there isn’t an upper age limit.
Creating with LEGO is a great way to bond with your child. And it is a fabulous pastime that adults can enjoy independently.