CRANBERRY TWP — Children who love Legos are invited to augment their kindergarten schedule with a program that combines learning and fun.
Bricks 4 Kidz, an hourlong, weekly program for morning and afternoon kindergartners will begin today at the Cranberry Township Municipal Center for six weeks.
During the program 5- and 6-year-olds will use Lego kits to build models based on themes like space, amusement parks, and sports.
David Hasley, who bought the Pittsburgh-area franchise in July from Creative Learning in St. Augustine, Fla., said Bricks 4 Kidz is meant to introduce youngsters to the elementary concepts of architecture and engineering, all while having fun.
He said the class offers up to seven Lego models for each theme, and many are motorized.
“They get excited when they see that,” Hasley said.
Hasley said while he has after-school and community center programs in Allegheny County, the one picked up by Cranberry Township Parks and Recreation department is his first time in Butler County.
He explained that students will hear a presentation on the theme of the model to be built before they begin their work. Hasley maintains one instructor per 10 children.
Hasley has seven instructors, who teach the three Creative Learning programs. Some are recent college graduates with teaching degrees, while a few are engineering or architecture majors attending colleges.
Jason Mentel, program coordinator for Cranberry Township, said Bricks 4 Kidz will benefit kindergartners by introducing the concepts of building, fine motor skills, working cooperatively with others, and socialization skills.
He said Cranberry offers “Snapology” classes for children ages 6 through 12 that use Legos, and is eager to offer a class to younger students.
“Legos are very popular,” Mentel said. “It’s a good fit.”
The Lego kits used by Bricks 4 Kidz, Hasley explained, are proprietary designs created by two top Italian engineers. One of the engineers recently built a robot from Legos that can solve a Rubik’s Cube in less than a minute.
Hasley hopes to continue partnering with Cranberry by offering lengthier summer camps this year.
For information on the Bricks 4 Kidz classes being offered in Cranberry, or to register online, log onto www.cranberrytownship.org/programs.