|Nothing too fancy, just a little off the top, please.|
Oh, yeah, sorry, the giant Mega Bloks, Tinkertoys, letter blocks, and generic wood building blocks got replaced with dolls because our two girls (ages 2 and 4) didn't play with them anymore.
"That's okay." He said, walking to a large storage cabinet in another part of the room, "I'll just play with Legos."
Yes, while all the other building toys have been tossed aside for stuffed animals and dollies, Lego has remained as the only building toy our girls still enjoy. But that's OK, because they really enjoy it.
I've already gone on here and here in praise of Lego's new sets which target girls, because at least for my girls, it is working. Here's what I mean:
|Pet salon is busy. Not sure if Ariel is a customer or staff.|
In fact, this boy friend was so intrigued by the details in the Friends pets that he asked his parents for several for Christmas. The biggest bonus for me is perhaps getting to see things like Chewbacca going to the pet salon.
|What 2 four-year-old girls made in 20 minutes.|
Third, the Lego sets marketing to girls are not dumbed down in terms of their complexity or how much bang you get for your buck. In Why Lego Friends is not one of the worst toys of 2012 (and why Mega Bloks Barbie is), David Pickett reports on his comparison of construction complexity of various lines of Lego sets and Lego competitors. He writes:
If we assume that constructions sets with similar price points will result in completed models of equivalent size, then we can use the piece/dollar ratio of construction sets as a rough indication of the complexity** of one building kit relative to another. The higher the piece/dollar ratio, the more building is involved in a given set or group of sets. This is a way of quantifying the differences that are obvious to the naked eye in the above comparison of the Friends and Babrie sets. I charted these values for sets from nine different themes and found the average pc/$ ratio for each line of products. The product lines I used were LEGO Friends, Mega Bloks Barbie, LEGO City, Mega Bloks World of Warcraft, LEGO Ninjago, LEGO Paradisa, LEGO Lord of the Rings & The Hobbit, Mega Bloks Skylanders and Mega Bloks Halo.
Much to my surprise, Friends came in second (Halo was highest) with a ratio of 9.8.
Diaz argues that the heavily themed sets are a "back door" to hook kids on Lego and eventually interest them in other sets that are even more challenging and spark even more creativity:
Once the radioactive Lego brick bites them, they become hooked. The next time they will want one Lego set just because it seems cool or more complicated. The space shuttle. A Lego creator building. A Technic car. Both girls and boys would pick those and build whatever they want with them.
|Two preschoolers concentrating for an hour and politely|
taking turns following an instruction manual - just because
they wanted to build a scorpion. Lego must be magic.
As a parent, I must just say: Dude, that is so much cooler than watching her dress and undress fashion dolls for an hour.