Legos connect the past with the future of Joplin

Joplin Lego Competition

Lisa Nelson had a conversation with her son one day. She asked him, “If you could build a local landmark, what would you build?” Her son said, “I don’t really know of any.”

This came as a revelation to Nelson who teaches local history.

So, she and her son began to brainstorm. The idea they came up with was Iconic Joplin: a combination of Legos, engineering, STEM practice and a fun way for 12 to 16-year-old middle schoolers to learn about historic Joplin architecture.

By reaching back into Joplin’s past, the project aims to encourage kids headed to high school to pursue a career in math, science, or engineering. And what better — or more fun — way to connect the past with the future than with Legos?

KOAM’s Janna Hautala sat down with Lisa Nelson to build more on this story.