LEGO®: Behind the Brand
LEGO® toys are such an essential part of childhood that it seems these iconic toys have existed since the beginning of time. That’s because for nearly 90 years, the toys have been beloved for generations for tapping into creativity, imagination and the fun of building. Learn more about the LEGO® brand story.
The LEGO® Group was founded in Denmark in 1932 by Ole Kirk Kristiansen, a carpenter skilled in crafting wooden toys. The company remains a privately held, family-owned organization to this day. The LEGO® name comes from the Danish words “leg godt,” which mean “play well.” It wasn’t until 1958 that the LEGO® interlocking plastic “brick” that we know and love today was developed, and it has built a special place in the hearts of kids ever since.
Fun facts about the LEGO® brand
- The original LEGO® brick hasn’t changed since it was introduced in 1958, which means a brick sold this year would lock perfectly with one made in 1958!
- During the holiday season each year, 28 LEGO® sets are sold every second.
- There are about 80 LEGO® bricks for every person on earth.
- If connected end to end, the LEGO® bricks sold in just one year could wrap around the planet five times.
- Six eight-studded bricks can fit together in 915,103,765 different combinations.
- If LEGO® figurines were real people, they would be the world’s largest population. (There are more than four billion of these figurines!)
- LEGO® is the world’s largest manufacturer of wheels (beating out brands like Bridgestone and Goodyear).
These are just some of the many fun and interesting facts about the LEGO® brand story. It’s no wonder LEGO® has been named “Toy of the Century” by the likes of Fortune magazine and the British Association of Toy Retailers.
LEGO® is Danish for “play well,” and the company really does believe that play is critical to a child’s development.
I love learning about how central the ideas of children and play are to this brand. (I guess I shouldn’t have been so surprised. After all, in Danish the company’s name means “play well!”) But the company really does believe that play is critical to a child’s development, and that play allows a child to learn to solve problems, to express and foster creativity, and to develop resiliency. Within the LEGO Group brand framework, the central tenet is “children are our role models.”
If you’re a parent with young children, or a kid at heart, it’s very likely you have some (or more likely quite a few!) LEGO®s at your house. My four-year-old daughter loves them (especially the full LEGO® sets), and I’m a big fan of the skills these toys can help her develop.
Benefits of playing with LEGOs®
- Problem solving, mathematics, and special awareness
- Creativity and experimentation
- Physical development (particularly fine motor skills)
- Stress reduction
- Teamwork and social skills when they’re playing with LEGO®s with friends
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