The children were allegedly incorporating into Legotown "their assumptions about ownership and the social power it conveys." These assumptions "mirrored those of a class-based, capitalist society -- a society that we teachers believe to be unjust and oppressive."Reminds me of my own kindergarten, Lego, and property story: as a lad, I was quite taken with some nifty Lego accessories that were stored in a giant tub in a corner of class. I figured I could sneak a few home, and no one would ever know.
They claimed as their role shaping the children's "social and political understandings of ownership and economic equity ... from a perspective of social justice."
So they first explored with the children the issue of ownership. Not all of the students shared the teachers' anathema to private property ownership. "If I buy it, I own it," one child is quoted saying. The teachers then explored with the students concepts of fairness, equity, power, and other issues over a period of several months.
At the end of that time, Legos returned to the classroom after the children agreed to several guiding principles framed by the teachers, including that "All structures are public structures" and "All structures will be standard sizes."
At home, as I was building a Lego house, installing a Lego sink and miniature Lego faucets, my dad wandered over to see what I was building. "Hey, what are these pieces?" he asked, suspicious. I figured the jig was up, and burst out crying. "They belong to teacher," I blubbered. (How did he know? They were cool, limited edition pieces, and we were poor. It's all obvious in retrospect.)
That afternoon I had to return the little Lego sinks and faucets, sniffling in shame as my kindergarten teacher looked on in what was probably amusement. And so ended my life of crime.
Update: The Onion, as always, provides the reality check.