'Play Well'

Wednesday, May 31, 2017
Connie Jo Discoe/McCook Gazette

“Lego Guy,” Curtis Monk of Platteville, Colo., explains the history of Lego toys to young readers at McCook Public Library during his visit May 16 to kick off the library’s children’s summer reading program, “Build a Better World.” Monk said his parents gave him his very first Lego set, and his mother sold it one day. He has collected seriously for just the past 10 years. Monk said that Ole Kirk Christiansen started building wooden building blocks toys in his Billund, Denmark workshop in 1932, and expanded to plastic toys in 1947. The modern Lego brick design was patented on Jan. 28, 1958. Monk said that Lego people appeared in 1978, and now outnumber real people in the world. “Lego blocks will be 60 years old next year,” Monk told the children. “Lego loves to celebrate. Look for big things next year.” Monk said that the word “Lego” is derived from the Danish phrase “leg godt,” which means “play well.” Monk said he shares Lego blocks with children at his presentations, but doesn’t build with them. “I give them an idea: ‘Build a building, or construction equipment.’ Legos help build problem-solving and decision-making skills. I want the kids to use their own imagination, their own creativity,” he said. Monk’s displays of completed villages fascinated McCook kids, including Jackie Sattler and Mitchell Harms.

Connie Jo Discoe/McCook Gazette
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