Bricks and Books Club: The One and Only Ivan

Last month I blogged about Getting Started with a Bricks and Books Club. Today, I thought I would share the plan from our first inaugural meeting!



  • Would you rather be a dog, gorilla or an elephant? Why?

This turned into a pretty heavy icebreaker! One of our participants wanted to be an elephant so they would never forget things like their grandparent with Alzheimer’s. 😦 By and large, most of the kids in our club said they wanted to be dogs.

Discussion Questions:

  • Connect: Ivan’s parents named him Mud because he made pictures with mud. They named his sister Tag because she loved to play tag. Is there a story behind your name? (Note: I emailed the registrants in advance and asked them to chat with their child about this question).
  • Recall: At the beginning of the book, Bob and Ivan say a lot of negative things about humans, such as, “Humans speak too much. They chatter like chimps,” and “Humans. Rats have bigger hearts. Roaches have kinder souls.” Do their feelings about humans change by the end of the book? Why?
  • Analyze: Is Mack a “good” or a “bad” guy? Why?

What a robust discussion! Feelings about Mack were pretty mixed. One wise young soul said they didn’t think anyone was all bad or all good – people are a mix of both.

Building Challenge: Secret Zoo Animal Exhibit

Credit for this super fun activity goes to Peter at The Lego Librarian! The premise is pretty simple: build a zoo exhibit, but don’t tell anyone what animal you’re making the exhibit for.

At the end of our building time, the kids wrote their guesses down on paper left by each exhibit:

BBC Mystery Exhibit

Mystery Zoo Exhibit

Note the high brick wall and yellow rocks in this mystery exhibit… it’s a habitat for a lion!

Here are some more animal exhibits:

BBC Seal Exhibit

Seal Exhibit

Notice all the blue water blocks for the seals!

BBC Giraffe Exhibit

Giraffe Exhibit

Check out all those tall trees for the giraffes!

BBC Turtle Exhibit

Turtle Exhibit

Please note that LEGO® is a trademark of the LEGO Group of companies which does not sponsor, authorize or endorse this content.

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