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Sprout’s philosophy, play.think.grow, is based on the belief that we learn by interacting with our surroundings, so we should create surroundings that lend themselves to interacting with. To some furniture is a fixture. To us it is a toy. It is a way of interacting and learning. As a kid, I (Clark) grew up in rural community and spent my childhood building trails, bridges, zip lines, and forts in the trees near my house. As I got older I worked at my dad’s cabinet shop and built paddle boats, steam engines, and motorized buggies. I dreamed of (and still do dream of) becoming an inventor and an entrepreneur. But it all began before I was big enough to pick up a hammer or saw. My love of discovering, creating, and inventing started while sitting on the floor in the middle of a pile of Legos. These tiny pieces were my medium of creativity, just like paint, clay, or the keys on a piano. They could be put together, then rearranged, and reformed to create something new time and time again. My mom would frequently tell me and my siblings that, "Lego's are to make and break." The value of Legos was not what we created, but that became creators. Legos took me from playing with trucks to building trucks, from dreaming to doing, and the more we do the more we allow ourselves to dream. What is so great about legos? They lower the barriers to creativity. Anyone can dream. I don’t have to expensive tools, or honed skills to build. It released the inventor in me. That’s what great toys do. They don’t just entertain. They inspire. They enable. They build confidence in young minds. All of the greats have: Lincoln Logs, Tinker Toys, Erectors Sets, Legos, K’nex. Sprout is taking an everyday object and bringing it down to a level that kids can now build and create as opposed to simply use and play with.
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