Kid with a lego challenge build
Kids Crafts & Activities,  learning and literacy,  Simple & Sensible "Supermom" Ideas

Lego Challenges for Kids: Fun, Creative, & Educational Activity Ideas

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Kids love Legos — that’s no surprise to anyone. With the new Lego Masters show on TV this season, my kids have been wanting to try their own Lego challenges. Since schools have been closed here for two months and counting, I created a bunch of Lego challenges for my kids to promote creativity while passing the time. (So. Much. Time.)

I’ve actually been thrilled with the outcome. I expected the kids to build for a few minutes, get bored, and move on, but NOPE! The first time we did this activity, my kids spent almost a full hour on just the first Lego challenge idea card. Then they asked to do another and spent almost another hour working on their second challenge idea as well. They wanted to do a third challenge, but I decided to save the rest of the Lego challenge cards for another day (you know, since they’ll be out of school for infinity days…).

Read on for ways to implement these Lego challenges with your kids as well as instructions for downloading your own copy of the printable Lego challenge ideas.

Lego Challenge Ideas for Kids Printable Pin

Why Lego challenges are great for kids

Lego challenges have a lot of developmental benefits for kids. First, there’s the creative aspect. Even if you give your kids a specific mission, there’s still infinite ways they can carry it out. For example, you can see what my eight-year-old created for the Safari Vehicle Challenge (he took it upon himself to build an entire safari scene, tree house, water feature, etc.)

Lego challenge safari vehicle idea
The best part? My son took a full hour (+) to work on a Lego challenge that would otherwise have taken 20 minutes.

 

Second, there’s self-management. Your child gets to decide how they’ll meet the particular goal. They can determine how many steps will be required and in what order. Then, they execute their plan. 

Third, there’s a lot of academic skills that go into Lego play. Creating with Legos encourages problem solving and mathematical thinking. How tall is too tall? Will their creation last? Is it stable enough to survive a move? (If you’re still not convinced, this website breaks down the myriad educational benefits of Legos for kids.)

Legos are especially good for fine motor control, which is great because my middle son’s handwriting is atrocious. 🙂

Ideas for doing these Lego challenges with your kids

There’s a lot of different ways you could do these Lego challenges with your kids. Following are a few suggestions, but definitely take the activity and implement it however works best for your family.

My favorite way to do these Lego challenges is to take the printable cards, cut them out, and laminate them. I then have each kid draw a card with a challenge idea out of a hat. Each kid builds their own Lego creation, according to the challenge card. On the back of each card, I included some guiding questions to help them get started. Depending on your kids’ ages, they may or may not need those (but they’re included in the printable document).

Lego challenge idea drawing from hat
Sometimes I manipulate the results by leaving out cards that are too hard/easy for the kid who’s drawing. Shhhh!

Every Man for Himself

I don’t make it a competition because my oldest is eight and his brothers are only five and three, so that’s clearly unfair. Instead, once each kid has built their creation, I ask them to tell me about it. You’d be surprised at the crazy, elaborate explanations the kids sometimes come up with for their creations. 

I usually ask them a few follow-up questions like, 

What is your favorite part of your creation?” 

“What was the hardest part of this Lego challenge for you?”

“If you could have access to any Lego pieces you wanted, what would you do differently?”

Since each kid gets a different Lego challenge, and they’re not really competing with one another, they tend to be much kinder in their words about one another’s creation.

5 year old's Lego challenge creation
Case-in-point: as soon as my 8-year-old was reminded it wasn’t a competition, he pointed out all the cool things his little brother had added to the “Big Foot Cage” Challenge

 

Make the Lego Challenge a Competition

If you have siblings who are less prone to fist-fighting, you could have them compete against one another on the same challenge idea. This is especially true if your kids are a little older, where the age difference isn’t that big of a deal developmentally.

Having a Lego-building competition also works really well with a group of friends. Friends are far more likely to get along than siblings–that’s just how it is. The competition also makes a great activity for a play date or Lego-themed birthday party.

Make it a Team Build

Instead of having each kid choose a Lego challenge card, have the kids (however many) choose only one card. The kids can then work together to build the challenge item. This is a really great way to encourage team work, communication, and planning.

It’s always fun for kids when Mom or Dad gets involved, so feel free to join in the fun every now and then. However, Lego challenges are also a great way to occupy your kids independently while you get something else done. (Amen and Hallelujah!)

Dad joining the Lego challenge for kids
My husband joining one of the Lego challenge rounds (and helping the toddler in his lap).

Get your printable copy of the Lego challenges for kids

Below is a low-resolution image of the one of the printable sheets. Of course, the version you’ll download will be full-sized and high-resolution.

Lego Challenge Ideas Printable
The challenge ideas and questions are organized as mirror images, so you can place the two sheets back-to-back for easy laminating (if you so choose).

To get your printables, click the link below to be redirected to my shop page, where the system allows you to name your price. The suggested price is $2, but I don’t want cost to be an obstacle for anyone. For this reason, I’ve enabled the system to allow you to name your own price, including $0. Once you’ve completed your purchase (or “purchase”) the file will be emailed to you. This name-your-own-price feature is new for me, so please email me at [email protected] if you experience any difficulties.


Click here to get your printables from my shop!

I highly recommend laminating the Lego challenge cards.

{This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I may earn from qualifying purchases, at no additional cost to you. Please see my disclosure page for details.}

My kids really enjoyed the Lego challenge and spent way longer on their creations than I anticipated. The deck of challenge cards included in the resource library could be used over many days, but you will probably want to laminate them so they’ll last. If you don’t have a laminator, or you’re just not interested in laminating, you could use contact paper or packing tape as a make-shift laminator.

*If you’re in the market for a reasonably-priced laminator, I have this one and I love it because it’s incredibly simple. You just plug it in, put your paper in the plastic envelope, and send it through the laminator — done! I was able to order the laminator and laminating envelopes via Amazon Prime. (If you don’t have Prime, you can get a 30-day free trial here).

Apparently, it’s also quite durable because I made a mistake this time around, did something really stupid, and got two of my Lego challenge cards stuck inside it. I attacked the inside of it with a cake spatula for a full 15 minutes to get them out (success!) and the laminator STILL works!

I hope your kids enjoy these Lego challenge activities as much as mine did! Good luck and happy building!

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