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Danish toymaker Lego Builds Giant Brick Playhouse in its Hometown

"Lego House will be the only one of its kind in the world and it will remain so, because Billund is the home of Lego and this is where we will always be," its general manager, Jesper Vilstrup, told Reuters

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A LEGO model is displayed during a news conference in Copenhagen, Denmark, Feb. 16, 2017 ahead of the September opening of the LEGO House Experience Center in Billund. (Scanpix Denmark/ Ida G. Arentsen) VOA
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Danish toymaker Lego is building a playhouse in its hometown designed to look like 21 giant versions of its bricks stacked on top of each other, the company said on Thursday.The Lego House is due to open in September near the company’s headquarters in Billund, Denmark.

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“Lego House will be the only one of its kind in the world and it will remain so, because Billund is the home of Lego and this is where we will always be,” its general manager, Jesper Vilstrup, told Reuters.

The 12,000-square-meter (130,000-square-feet) building, designed by Danish architect Bjarke Ingels, will include three restaurants, a Lego store, four play areas and a gallery displaying the history of Lego and creations made by fans.

A LEGO model is displayed during a news conference in Copenhagen, Denmark, Feb. 16, 2017 ahead of the September opening of the LEGO House Experience Center in Billund. (Scanpix Denmark/ Ida G. Arentsen) VOA

Lego House will “display everything the Lego brick can do,” Vilstrup said.

Lego, which is vying with Barbie doll maker Mattel to become the world’s biggest toymaker, has teamed up with movie franchises such as “Star Wars” in deals that span Lego sets, video games, and smartphone applications.

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The company, founded in 1932 by Ole Kirk Kristiansen and his grandchild Kjeld Kirk Kristiansen, aims to bring children back to its core product: the Lego brick, first produced in its current form in 1958.(VOA)

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Barbie Ventures Into Coding Skills To Encourage Girls to Learn Coding Skills

The lessons, for example, show girls how to build robots, get them to move at a dance party, or do jumping jacks

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Barbie
Barbie. Pixabay

Barbie, the world’s most iconic doll, is venturing into coding skills in her latest career as a robotics engineer.

The new doll, launched Tuesday, aims to encourage girls as young as seven to learn real coding skills, thanks to a partnership with the kids game-based computing platform Tynker, toymaker Mattel said.

Robotics engineer Barbie, dressed in jeans, a graphic T-shirt and denim jacket and wearing safety glasses, comes with six free Barbie-inspired coding lessons designed to teach logic, problem solving and the building blocks of coding.

The lessons, for example, show girls how to build robots, get them to move at a dance party, or do jumping jacks.

Four robotics engineer Barbies are seen flanked by a robot.
Four robotics engineer Barbies are seen flanked by a robot. VOA

According to U.S. Department of Commerce statistics, 24 percent of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) jobs were held by women in 2017.

Barbie has held more than 200 careers in her almost 60-year life, including president, video game developer and astronaut.

Also read: Is Barbie doll hypersexualized? It was meant to be

Tynker co-founder Krishna Vedati said in a statement that the company’s mission to empower youth worldwide made Barbie an ideal partner “to help us introduce programming to a large number of kids in a fun engaging way.”