Solo – The secret box figures

In this variation of 'Build the secret figure', the child gets the opportunity to create experiences with the frameworks and structures that are created with our play. In a safe environment, the child can explore the excitement about building another's secret figure and the challenges of building a figure you cannot always see.
The task

We build each other’s secret figures hidden behind a box which is placed within a distance. The aim of the activity is that we practice our construction skills and that we build confidence with the materials and the routines.

Solo – Build the Hidden Figure We create a motivating framework for the child. 



Suggestion for introduction

We create a motivating framework for the child. 

For example, we can say: ”First, we build a small secret figure from the pile of bricks we each have. Then we put our figures in the box that is placed at some distance from the building table. Afterwards, we each build a copy of the other’s figure from the bricks in the other pile. We can look at the figure in the box when we want and then go back to build the figure at the building table. When each has built a copy of the other’s secret figure, we are done.”


The activity can be adapted to the framework of one lesson and varied according to the time available and the child’s prerequisites.


We use small Lego sets that we are familiar with, or wooden blocks, colored cubes, magnetic tiles, paper, or something else. We choose a small pile of materials to build the secret figures. There could for instance be 10 bricks in 2×2 identical piles.

During the activity

During the play session, the child encounters challenges and successes, where we can stop and help spot what is difficult or what is going well. We can do this in several ways:

Reflection routines 

When we get the opportunity to reflect together with the child on what challenges or discoveries arise along the way, we can use one or more reflection routines. It could be, for example, a learning metaphor with a social strategy that we practice, an emoji that describes the feeling we have right now, or a rating of how well we think the building is going. In this way, a reflection routine can help to show and put into words the experiences that the child has during the play session.

Facilitating questions

We can ask facilitating questions to the child along the way, as they naturally arise in the building process. In this way, we facilitate the play session so that we continue the play and at the same time learn something from it. For example: 

  • I see that you have stopped building. I wonder how we can continue from here? 
  • I see that you have encountered a challenge. Should we try to solve it together? 
  • Try to notice what you are doing right now. Do you think this is a collaborative strategy? 
Show and Tell

Finally, in the play session, we give a Show and Tell of our construction, so that we have the opportunity to share our experiences, reflections, and feelings about the construction process.

First, we talk about our model and the process of building it. During the Show and Tell, we can use reflection routines and reflective questions to support the discoveries that have been made. For example:

  • What went well? 
  • What was difficult?
  • Is there anything that you want to do differently the next time we build?
Print activity