Bridging Generations: The Louisville Masonic Community & Blocks Rock!

December / 2018

There's something extraordinary happening at Louisville Masonic Community, and as you’ll see, it includes Blocks Rock!

The sprawling 82-acre Louisville Masonic Community is visually impressive with brick buildings, rolling green spaces, flowering bushes and tall trees. Yet, there’s something happening inside this community’s buildings that is even more extraordinary, and as you’ll see, it includes Blocks Rock!

Sally’s Garden

The Louisville Masonic Community was founded in the 1800s and originally served widows and orphans of Kentucky Masons. Now, it offers an array of health services to the community, provides a pediatric daycare and preschool, and more.

One type of health service the Louisville Masonic Community provides is helping those with moderate levels of Alzheimer’s and other dementia to live fulfilling lives in Sally’s Garden, a part of their assisted care center.

“Here, we value growth, innovation, and remarkable service. As part of that innovation, we like to integrate new technologies into all our residents’ lives…. And, technology doesn’t have to mean high-tech. One of the technologies we’ve added to our residents’ lives is Blocks Rock!” said Nick Cooper, Executive Director and Administrator of the Masonic Home of Louisville.

Bridging the Generational Gap

The residents at Sally’s Garden regularly use Blocks Rock!. The staff at the Masonic Community like how portable Blocks Rock! is and how they can take it to wherever their residents are.

“People who didn’t want to go to activities now come out of their rooms to play (Blocks Rock!),” Nick said.

The staff use Blocks Rock! in Sally’s Garden in a special way, by bringing in kids from the daycare to play with the older residents.

“Both the young kiddos and older adults immediately interact with Blocks Rock! It takes almost no time for the relationship to begin,” said Nick.

When we asked Nick why he thought the generations played together so well, he applauded the simplicity and connectivity of Blocks Rock!  

“One of the great things about Blocks Rock! is that it’s simple, but it has a profound effect on whoever is using it - whether you’re 5 years old, 50 years old, or 105 years old. So, I think it’s that simplicity that allows people of all ages to get right in, start using it, and have that interaction with each other on a very deep level,” he said.

Intergenerational Competitors

When you watch the residents and the children play, you can see the relationships come to life.  “Blocks Rock! is what’s bridging the gap between these generations and that’s really special,” Nick said.

Edwina and Preston were one pair who played Blocks Rock! together. As Edwina, a Sally’s Garden resident, thought about playing the game, she said, “It would be a good game for a grandma, a grandpa, and grandkids to play together!” Preston agreed, and added that his favorite part of the game was ringing the bell when his block structure was complete!

Barbara and Garrison were another Blocks Rock! duo. Garrison said that he would want to play Blocks Rock with his grandparents, “especially my mamaw, because she’s very competitive and so is everyone. And, this game is very fun!”

Barbara added that she thought that playing the game with multiple generations was great because it allowed the children to learn about adults, and the adults to learn from the children. “These kids were just as smart as the adults...or more! I think it’s interesting to see how quickly children learn, how they associate with older people, and I think it’s great,” Barbara said.

Dan, a resident, and Malaya also played together, and both agreed that Blocks Rock! was a good, competitive game. “At first, I thought it looked easy, but when I learned there were different levels and I saw the cards, it was harder! My blocks kept falling down,” Malaya said.

Blocks Rock! Beyond the Community

After seeing how Blocks Rock! improves the residents’ and the children’s lives, Nick Cooper has some final words.

“If you don’t have it, get it; whether you’re at home and have kids, or you have parents that live with you, or you have a community like ours. Get it and use it,” he said.

To see the intergenerational action and hear from Nick and the residents directly, check out the video below!