What it is… is 40 years old.

Start talking about about the gender divide in the way that LEGO targets its marketing, and before long, people will refer you to ‘Back in the day’ – when there was relatively little gender specific marketing: LEGO sets were marketed to children – boys and girls. Not boys OR girls.

Eventually, someone will typically refer to print ad above, from 1981. Showing a young girl who has built a model with her LEGO Bricks. The model looks chaotic to our concrete adult minds. But the look on her face is undeniably one of excitement, joy and pride. Somewhere along the way, LEGO Sets became more of a boy focussed product, with variable effectiveness in reengaging girls in LEGO play. And then we got LEGO friends. It might be disappointing that it was necessary to release a line of sets targeted at girls of a certain age, but I think the parts palette and the set design has benefitted as a result.

This advertisment is now 40 years old. and to celebrate, the LEGO Group are taking a trip back in time, to recreate this iconic advertisement, with the young builders of today. this coincides with the message tha the LEGO Group has signed up to the UN Women’s Empowerment Principles, to help guide how it can “better empower women and girls, accelerate gender equality, and encourage more young girls to believe they can achieve anything they set their hearts on.”

The LEGO Group is calling on families to help celebrate the skills, interests and creative potential of the next generation of female leaders by recreating its iconic 1981 LEGO® advert: submit a copy of a photo of your child, holding a LEGO creation they have made, and a poster will be emailed back!

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LEGO Ideas Missing ‘Hidden Figure’ explained?

When the “Women of NASA” LEGO Ideas set was released, many wondered why Katherine Johnson was not featured, despite inclusion in the original submission….

To Celebrate International Women’s Day, Mattel has announced a number of Barbie Dolls based on real life, inspirational women. As well as Katherine Johnson, we also see Pioneer Aviatrix Amelia Earhart and Mexican Artist Frida Kahlo. Further global role models (16 in the initial series) will be rolled out over the coming months.

Does this explain why Ms Johnson’s likeness was not released to LEGO for the Women of NASA set? I’m not sure, but if plans were already in motion, I reckon it’s a better than even money chance. However, I am glad she has been made available as a role model for Children around the world.

Even if not in Minifigure form.

(Via geek wire)