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Some positive feedback please.

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Hello fellow LEGO builders. I am hoping I am posting this in the correct forum. If not please let me know so I can put it where it belongs. This is going to be long, so please bear with me. I am a mom of two little girls who LOVE building with their LEGOs. For the past three years my girls (7 and 10) have competed in the school district's LEGO building competition. You bring your own LEGOs, everything must be disassembled, and they have ONE hour to build their creation from the ground up. They divide the kids into grade level (K-5) and each grade level has a "Most Realistic" and a "Most Creative" award. Then there is "Overall Most Realistic," "Overall Most Creative," and finally the "Best Of Show." My eldest has received a prize for her builds every year she has competed. In 2nd grade she won "Most Creative" for the 2nd grade level, last year she won "Best of Show," (she was in 3rd grade) and this year she won "Most Realistic" for the 4th grade level. (I am going to post some pictures of her build in the Historical section.)

My youngest started competing last year. She was in first grade and did not win a prize. She got over it pretty quickly. This year we (mom, dad, and both girls) have been working since January on planning and preparing for the competition. We've learned new techniques (thank-you eurobricks! :) ) We've done building run-throughs to make sure they could get their creation built in under an hour. We revised, changed, discarded etc. My youngest was very proud of her LEGO Friends grocery store she made. She worked really hard. Once again, she had to watch as her elder sister won a prize and she did not. As a mom my heart broke when I saw her little face just fall as her sister's name was called for one of the prizes. Even my eldest told me it was hard to be happy about her win, because her sister didn't get anything. My youngest tried to be positive and said "It's about having fun, not winning." But, I could tell she was having a hard time believing it herself. And, she made some very disparaging remarks about herself in reference to her loss later on in the day when she thought she was alone with her sister. I want her to learn to accept defeat and disappointment as part of life, but I don't want it to kill her self esteem, or her sense of self worth either.

She has some mistakes in the build but we've always told the girls when they're building if it doesn't go together like it did when they practiced, make it work, improvise, and move on to the next part to build and come back to it later because they only have so much time to build. She did that, when she came to find some of her pieces were missing. (we found them sitting on the table when we came home)

So here's what I'm asking, I am going to post some pictures of her little Friends grocery store. Would some of you mind leaving some positive feedback about her grocery store that I can read to her? It's one thing when your mom and dad and grandmother tell you they think it's wonderful, but a whole different thing when someone you don't know complements something you worked hard on. I would really appreciate it. Thanks. :)

TL;DR: My youngest daughter who is 7 had to watch, for the second year in a row, as her elder sister won a prize and she didn't. She needs a boost of confidence.

Side view: (The broken jelly jar was 100% my youngest's idea.)

26344607346_4951bcb220_z.jpggrocery2 by asuka0278, on Flickr

Produce section:

25746273783_94049e6d35_z.jpggrocery3 by asuka0278, on Flickr

Front of store:

26349041675_5dbc774bff_z.jpggrocery6 by asuka0278, on Flickr

Cash register, peanut butter and jelly jars, part of the dairy section:

25767789413_08f037243a_z.jpggrocery8 by asuka0278, on Flickr

The bakery section:

26282807841_c92f53b7a3_z.jpggrocery10 by asuka0278, on Flickr

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I have no kids. But being a kid once, from my personal view, it doesn't matter too much when a load of random people say good things about it, it still won't matter as on the day, the sister won again and she didn't. That is what is going to be fresh in her heart. For all she tries, kids do get a sense of 'winning mostly means more than the taking part', as to be honest, most of the time, it does, that's the harsh reality.

This might not be your view, and again, I'm speaking from not having children, just from being one at some point, if I was the winning sister, I'd pass on the next competition, and put all my effort into helping my sister do her best, and I'd be there as 100% support. That would mean more to me than winning. Having the support rather than feeling *again, again* I'm overshadowed.

As for the creation itself, all the stuff is right there to make a great moc. The flower department, the cake department, the strawberry jam on the shelves, the till, the fruit and veg, the cute little icecream freezer etc. and for a 7 year old, that's flipping good stuff there. It's impressive how a 7 year old can do such a nice building when all I did was make big blocky rainbow dump trucks when I was that age, with 2x4's :grin: The interior is sorted. Work with her on the exterior.

Perhaps for next year, if possible, make it smaller. The content is great, the amount of area to put it in is sparse and detracts from the interior in a manner of speaking. It also means less time/bricks to focus on the exterior, which (again, I understand a 7 year old did this) could make the difference next time. She certainly understands how to do the interior content very well, and if I was a lego minifig looking in her cake window display, I'd be right in there buying some to stuff myself with :laugh:

I hope she enters again next year.

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Your children should just enjoy Lego as a toy or focus for their creativity and imagination. Nobody should be judging that.

Maybe next year you could have a family picnic instead? :thumbup:

Take some Lego for them to play with and then build some things together as a family.

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I love the interior and think the broken jelly jar was a very creative idea.

However your daughters are competing against different people so the two can't compare even if their wins or lack of wins are compared at the same grade level. As a mother of two girls with a gap of three years, i know how difficult it is for the youngest. Whenever they succeed at something, the older one has achieved the same thing already so it doesn't feel like a big accomplishment to the youngest and it is easy for them to lack self esteem and eventually stop trying. The best thing we eventually found was to make sure the youngest had a hobby all of her own, preferably with a good tutor/ coach so that she had one thing that she eventually excelled in, in her case singing, ( and didn't feel she was competing with her sister).

Of course i hope she continues to enjoy building lego too.

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What a delightful simple yet it has a realistic feel to it MOC.

Your youngest is only seven, she has done an excellent job and she should be very proud of herself at what she did come up with.

Tell her that if she keeps trying she will get better it's great life training as there are many challenges in life beyond Lego yet be creative with it can teach one to be resourceful and apply one's mind to a task.

Brick On !

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