And now I can say I have seen what amounts to the graduating class of M.I.T. 2027.
I can also report we were the first in line. The LEGO event clearly tied with Christmas for popularity. Before the velvet rope was drawn back the boys were chatting up the LEGO guys in aprons and fancy LEGO shirts. While I was admittedly excited, I tried very hard to watch my children interact with other kids and the event organizers. I genuinely wanted to see what they would do, left to their own devices.
I have a few conclusions. Cooper focuses on speed and likes working independently. Short of being rude, but just short, he shooed away any official LEGO engineers who offered to help him. Mason likes teamwork and often checked in with an engineer concerning his progress and quality of work. You could say he likes to be micro-managed. Together they probably were responsible for more than 35 bricks.
The bricks were made of about 50 small LEGO bricks. And were then used to assemble the large Buzz (8' feet tall). The smaller Buzz -- shown in picture -- was the map used to build the Buzz to scale. Very cool process and my boys both enjoyed watching the master engineers put the big Buzz together and building the bricks.
Of course, we spent a lot of money. I found myself in a crowd of mothers from team LEGO. Very interesting crowd. We swapped ideas of good birthday parties for LEGO lovers, where to buy the best LEGO shirts, and talked about the best way to leverage the space in the "pick a brick" tubs. (If you didn't understand any of that, don't worry, it's a LEGO thing.)
Just days later when Cooper's teachers gave him the assignment to draw an oceanic creature he had never seen before he told me, "I could just build a narwhal out of LEGOs and then trace it on the paper. Would that work, Mom?"
MORE PICTURES FROM THE EVENT
PS -- Did you know one of the top 10 schools for mechanical engineering is Cooper Union?