A limited-edition toy was popular on Singapore resale app Carousell yesterday, and no, it was not Hello Kitty.
It is a special Lego set commissioned by the Ministry of Education (MOE), featuring three Singaporean icons: Cavenagh Bridge, Changi Control Tower, and the Supertrees from Gardens by the Bay.
The 244-piece set commemorates Singapore's 50 years of independence and is named Building My SG: Reflect, Celebrate, Inspire.
Some sets have been distributed to schools and a handful have already gone to the highest bidders online.
A Carousell user who calls himself "hxppypxll" told The New Paper that he sold a set for $60 yesterday morning.
Other listings later in the day showed the highest bids to be between $60 and $70.
But some netizens discouraged others from buying from such avenues.
Facebook commenter Paul Chew said the Lego sets are for children and that people should not "rip the kids off their fair share of fun."
News of the Lego set was first reported about on Tuesday by Brickset, a website for Lego fans, and some international fans, including those from the US and Hong Kong, asked how they could get their hands on the limited-edition set.
Local fans were also eager, after a photo of the set was also uploaded on the I'm a Singaporean Adult Fan of Lego (AFOL) Facebook page.
Facebook commenter Recce Chong even joked that those without children will have to "hang out at the school gates and give your best offer to the parents waiting for the kids".
Lego has caught on in many community centres, neighbourhood and residents' committees, where bricks are provided by People's Association for residents to promote bonding and creativity.
There are more than 60 Lego hobby groups in Singapore, reported The Straits Times last year.
As the three models cannot be constructed simultaneously, a true collector will need more than one Lego set to be able to display all three Singaporean icons at the same time.
Said a Lego fan, Ms Dawn Sim, 42: "Marina Bay Sands is the only Singaporean building in the Lego Architecture series, so it will be special to have the Changi Control Tower as it is such an iconic building."
Ms Sim, a mother of two, said the MOE Lego set would educate students about history.
For instance, one of the landmarks featured is Cavenagh Bridge. Opened in 1870, it is one of the oldest bridges in Singapore and the only suspension bridge here.
LEARNING THROUGH PLAY
Dr Carol Balhetchet, clinical psychologist and senior director for youth services at the Singapore Children's Society, said that the toys are a good idea as children learn about life and form social skills with others through play.
"But to teach children about history, parents need to make an effort to remind them of these landmarks' heritage, and bring children to these places in real life," said Dr Balhetchet.
She thinks that older students may find the Lego set less challenging and will treat it as an ornament.
Mr Melvyn Goh, 39, a Lego enthusiast, commented that Changi Control Tower "looked realistic". He also felt that Lego is an inspirational activity for children.
"My friend was a master Lego builder when he was young and he became an architect when he grew up," he said.
At press time, MOE was unable to respond to The New Paper queries about the number of Lego sets distributed and when students will be receiving them.
This article was first published on May 7, 2015.
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