The Lego Master Builder Academy is a series of sets with instructions and accompanying resources to help Lego fans make the most of their Lego collections by teaching advanced building skills and methods.
Any parent of a Lego fan knows how dedicated they are to their craft. I have watched my son’s progress from Duplo, to Larger Lego system sets and on to Lego Digital Designer.
I see how much of his time is spent playing with Lego, reading about Lego or simply thinking about Lego (generally when he is supposed to be doing homework!).
I have a great book called The Unofficial Lego Builder’s Guide which is full of advanced Lego building techniques. It is a wonderful book I would recommend for any Lego family but it is a little too word-heavy for my son to read at age 10 and more of a book that adults can read to help their kids.
As a parent, I want to support my son and his love of Lego, his passion for design and the commitment he naturally has to creating and constructing.
What has been missing from Lego has been a resource to help kids enhance their skills and knowledge of how Lego works as a construction medium and so help them make more advance models.
That is up until now…
Lego Master Builder Academy
By using a sequential series of building kits, Lego has developed an educational program for Lego fans (young and old but Lego recommends Ages 8-12) to develop their ability to produce better designs and models using this versatile range of building blocks.
Following the process outlined in the in-depth instruction books and using pieces included in the sets, Lego aficionados can push their design and construction skills to the limit.
There are six kits in the initial year of the Lego Master Builder Academy (MBA), the first is available as of June 2011. Level Two kits will become available next year and will build on skills mastered in Level one. Like any educational experience the student will progress sequentially through the kits and achieve a higher rank as they move through the course.
Lego Master Academy is available in the US initially but will come online for other countries later. The self-directed educational program starts off with an introductory kit and then students have the option to sign up and receive future kits sent to them directly over the course of a year.
Each kit will build on techniques learnt in the last kit, so that by the end students will have a solid basis to design and construct their own models to the standard of a Lego Master Builder. Students can also access a Member’s Only Website where there are areas to gain rewards, share models and get additional tips.
What’s In the Box?
Each kit includes all that students need to begin their learning:
Kit one includes an 84-page Designer Handbook, 178 LEGO pieces, exclusive LEGO MBA Minifigure, brick separator and brick storage box with sorting tray.
The models included with each kit teach specific techniques that kids can use in their own designs. In the first kit, students can rocket into Space model design with 3 different spaceship models developed just for LEGO MBA – Learning and practicing advanced LEGO techniques as they build.
The building isn’t confined to vehicles either. Students also learn about the Lego minifigure, accessories to create and how the figure fits into designs. Test out spaceship creations with the exclusive LEGO MBA minifigure and his buildable space accessories.
The kit includes a Designer Handbook, which aren’t the instructions – They’re 84 pages of tips, techniques, examples and inspiration for creating your own LEGO models.
Then onto the instructions! Unlike most Lego kits, the Lego Master Builders Academy instructions aren’t just pictures. LEGO MBA model building instructions are packed with special building techniques, brick tips and design insights from the real LEGO Master Builders.
And then of course the pieces. The kits come with special sorting trays and a handy brick separator (or as I like to call them the teeth- savers!) You can store a full year’s worth of LEGO MBA bricks in the storage box with lid.
The Lego Master Building Academy will improve a student’s skills in designing and building Lego models and have been created in assistance with Official Lego Master Builders. If your kids are aiming for a job at Lego these kits won’t guarantee them an interview but it will certainly head them in the right direction and get them motivated to share their models with other fans.
What is A Lego Master Builder?
Lego Master Builders are a group of select people hired by the Lego company to design and construct Lego models both at their head office and around the world. These builders are often highly skilled in design, art, maths and of course, Lego.
Generally their are put into two distinct categories, those that work for Lego to create new sets and kits and those that work in more of a freelance way, known as Lego Certified Professionals.
Lego Master Builders who work in Billund, Denmark are responsible for envisaging, designing and producing the Lego sets we see on store shelves each year. They may work as part of a larger design team that take s the sets from idea, prototype to final production phase.
Lego Certified Professionals may be hired by corporations who want a Lego model build of a product to have on display at shows or in their office or they may simply build Lego sculptures of their own design to show what can be achieved with this amazing medium. For example the Pacific Princess model above was designed by Lego Certified Professional Ryan McNaught and contains more than 250,000 Lego bricks, took 6 months to build and measures 10.5 feet long.
Regardless of where they work, Lego Master Builders, have developed their love and knowledge of Lego to the point that they are able to produce highly realistic models that are instantly recognizable and solid representations of an object.
They know the best pieces to use in each situation, so have extensive knowledge of the Lego piece inventory, including color. In addition they know the best techniques to place the pieces together so that the final model is accurate, sturdy and economical.
They know to how to use only the minimum pieces required to produce the final model – as some constructions are very large every additional piece will add further weight.
Lego Master Builder Academy
So why the Lego Master Builder Academy?
A large majority of the questions Lego receives from customers is “How Can I work for Lego?” or more accurately “How can I improve My Lego models?’.
The Lego Master Builder Academy is Lego’s response to that and we think it is a great idea. We will be updating this page with information as we progress through the kits but already know Lego is an a winner here.
You can find more about the Lego Master Builder Academy in the video below: