Not-for-profit seeks to help build and develop youth social skills through new Lego Club
The Prince Albert chapter of a provincial non-profit is hoping to use Lego as a way to teach children about social cues, cooperation and empathy.
At this point it’s just called the Lego Club, but it’s already been successfully implemented in Saskatoon by the Learning Disabilities Association of Saskatchewan. Now, the organization wants to start the same thing in Prince Albert.
Program facilitator Flora-Ann Halkett said using Lego provides a fun interactive way to help children develop social skills and she’s excited to see the first group take off.
“Lego’s fun for every child,” Halkett said. “To them they’re playing Lego. To them they’re building something, but in reality they’re also learning.”
Halkett was trained by Cass Phillips, the only certified Lego Social Skills Therapy Coach in the province, and plans to get the program going by October. Children will cooperate in groups of three to build a Lego creation, with each taking a turn at reading the directions, finding the right pieces, and building the final creation.
The goal is to get quieter children to speak up, while teaching rowdier children how to listen and follow directions.
“It’s going to help them in their daily lives, at home and at school,” Halkett explained. “ Sometimes at school when you have one teacher per 30 children, they don’t get that (instruction). When they come here and they learn these skills one-on-one, they’ve learning it in a smaller setting (and) they can use it in a bigger setting.”
The new club will be a learning experience for Halkett as well as the participants. This is the first time she’s ever led this kind of program, so she’s eager to see what kind of demand there is.
At this point the program is limited to eight and nine years olds, but that could change depending on the response from parents and students.
“A successful first run would be if we have people coming back,” she said. “That’s not saying that it didn’t work the first time, just that the kids enjoyed it.”
The LDAS Lego Club is open to all children. It runs one hour a week for seven weeks, starting in October. For more information about the program, including cost, phone 306-922-2982.