I started a Meetup group – Problem Solve and Communicate Better with LEGO® Bricks. We had our first meeting at a local bookstore, and it was so much fun! I had eight people RSVP and four showed up, which is a pretty good percentage for a new group! And it was an interesting mix of people – an agilist (someone who consults with businesses to help them be more agile and able to move on new business ventures), a financial person struggling with health issues, a woman who had recently lost her husband, and the woman’s friend who was taken out for pizza and LEGO® play for her birthday. The bookstore owner joined us for part of the time, and a friend of mine stopped by for a little while – she was just going to drop off flowers, but the power of play was too strong and she had to stay and play with us for a little while. Plus, I got to play, which I don’t get to do when I’m working for a company. We all had lots of fun.
We started making towers. It’s a great way to get used to playing with the bricks, especially for people who haven’t used them in a long time, if ever. There are lots of new types of bricks these days, and it’s great to figure them out early. Plus, it’s fascinating how much these towers represent the people who build them. The assignment isn’t to build a tower that represents you, but somehow the towers tend to say something about the people who make them.
Our next project was to build the best or worst roommate or neighbor. Great stories came out – the college roommate who loved pink and ended up taking over the room, the college roommate who was very young and kept losing things and having trouble getting things to work for her (her model had a car with only one wheel – the other three had been lost), the smoker, the late husband who was both the best and the worst roommate, the upstairs neighbors who sounded like they were having furniture races.
We next played with The Promotion. We each built whatever we wanted, and wrote three words about what we had built. Then, we each moved over one seat. Congratulations! We’ve been promoted. Everything you know about your job is in front of you. How close can you get to what the builder intended?
Everyone did very well. I didn’t get all the words in all the pics, but can you guess what they are?
Our last project was a shared model. We each built one or more aspects of what an ideal neighborhood would be, then put them all together in one shared model. Some of us built parts having to do with residential areas (people welcoming each other, no matter their house type or hat), some had to do with commercial areas (we need a bookstore, a library, a good grocery store, enough parking, good lighting), some had to do with community (put systems in place to keep people from falling out of the community, honor our elders, have a shared space to meet). In the end, this is what our ideal community looks like:
We ended using Rory’s Story Cubes to tell the story of what we had experienced that evening. We rolled all nine dice, each one with a different picture on each side, and selected three to help us tell our story. The words and phrases that came out included:
Insight.. Wisdom…. Play to find out about our shadow selves… Growth… the Magic of ideas… Time passed quickly… Hands-on… Creativity
I can’t wait to hold another Meetup, this one was so fun! I hope we can include more people next time. And maybe you want me to do this with you too? I love bringing the power of play to the workplace or to other groups of adults!