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- Join Dr. Jane Goodall in the forest of Gombe National Park in Tanzania as she researches wild chimpanzees, as she did in the early 1960s.
Humans were once thought of as the only tool makers on the planet. Animals had never been observed making or using tools. Dr. Jane Goodall’s trailblazing research showed that our closest relative in the animal kingdom – chimpanzees can and do make tools.
This fun LEGO® Ideas set is designed to include fun interactive play features to allow re-creation of Dr. Goodall’s groundbreaking research and chimp behavior.
- Can you build a Chimpanzee habitat and a research camp for Dr. Goodall?
- Can you role-play to win the trust of the Chimpanzee family, observe their habits and take photos?
- Can you help the chimps rearrange the leaves to make a nest to sleep in for the night?
- Can you be as smart as a chimp? Select a branch, pick off the leaves and go “termite fishing” in the termite mound. Now the chimps can have some LEGO® termite bugs for lunch!
There are 2 different ways to make your “termite fishing rod” in this set.
1. Take the big leaves off the brown branches. Then stick it in the side of the termite mound. Try to use the 2 LEGO® studs at the top to stick a bug on.
2. Take off the small green leaves on the green shrub (built using the flowers stem LEGO® piece). Then stick it in the side of the termite mound to try to stick into the center of the bugs.
As a young English woman, she pioneered research in the Gombe region of Tanzania. In 1960, she documented behavior in chimpanzees previously unidentified in any animal species known to science. She observed chimpanzees removing leaves from twigs, to make straight smooth sticks, which they then placed into termite mounds. The chimps waited for the termites to crawl on the stick and then removed the sticks to eat the bugs off them. The chimpanzees modified an object to create a tool!
Paleontologist Louis Leakey’s reaction to her discovery was:
"Now we must redefine man, redefine tools, or accept chimpanzees as humans."
This set includes:
Dr. Jane Goodall’s Camp (& all her human-made tools)
- Dr. Jane Goodall mini figure (the arms & torso piece used in the pictures is currently only available in the color tone shown, however it could be made to match her legs & face.)
- Cloth tent, cot, crate & backpack
- Desk, notebook, pencil, chair, lantern, barrel & fishing rod
- Cooking table, stove, pot, pan, fork & bucket
Observation Point (where the Chimps make their tools)
- Flowers, bushes & plant shoots
- 1 Frog
- Camera, binoculars & sling bag
- Space for Dr. Jane to observe the chimps
Chimp Tree & Termite Mound
- Family of 8 chimps
- Large tree whose leaves can be rearranged to build a chimp nest
- Plant vine for Chimps to swing down
- Termite mound with termites
- 1 Ring-necked Dove. This is a bird native to Gombe National Park and a reminder of Dr. Jane Goodall’s work as a UN Messenger of Peace. (This piece could be printed to have beak, eyes & feathers matching real life Ringed-necked Doves)
Me & My inspiration for this set:
My name is Carley. I am a teacher and I live in Hong Kong. I use LEGO® as a fun tool to learn, build and play in after-school activities with kids ages 2 - 14.
Dr. Jane Goodall herself is the biggest inspiration for this set! I learned as a child about her work from the National Geographic Magazines which filled my grandparents’ bookshelves and school library in Winnipeg, Canada.
I have had the pleasure of meeting Dr. Jane Goodall several times in her visits to Hong Kong when I was involved in her Roots and Shoots program. I also had the wonderful opportunity to learn from her while doing short-term study in Germany. I always find Dr. Jane Goodall’s positivity, persistence, hope and determination that individuals can make a constructive difference in the problems facing our world a huge jolt of inspiration. I hope this LEGO® Ideas set would inspire others to build, explore and research their passions as Dr. Goodall does so brilliantly.
No one can say it better than she said:
“What you do makes a difference, and you have to decide what kind of difference you want to make.” – Dr. Jane Goodall
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