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LEGO Education Panama Canal

Recently a very interesting set was added to the Brickset database: the #2000451 LEGO Education Panama Canal. LEGO Education sets are geared towards teachers and educational specialists to deliver playful learning experiences in preschool, elementary and middle school classrooms. While LEGO Education packages do include actual LEGO bricks to teach math, science, robotics, etc., it is rare to see an actual cohesive LEGO set in the line. In fact, the #2000451 LEGO Education Panama Canal is special in more than one way, so let’s take a look. 🙂


According to the announcement on Brickset, the #2000451 LEGO Education Panama Canal is released to commemorate the widening of the Panama Canal. The set shows how a series of locks allow ships to go through the canal while compensating for the height difference between sea level and the level of Gatun Lake. You can see the set in action in the video below:

As you can see, this 1,184-piece set is quite massive. It is somewhat crudely built compared to standard LEGO consumer sets, but the focus here is the educational aspect instead of good looks. Having an unfinished looking build allows students to see the moving parts, and highlights the mechanics of the canal. In contrast, the little ships are very well designed micro-builds. (Image below: map of the Panama Canal with gates leading to and leaving Gatun Lake – source Wikipedia)


The #2000451 LEGO Education Panama Canal will only be available in Panama, so it will likely be very hard to find outside of the country. In addition, production is limited to 40,000 sets. The original price is around $250, which means that on the secondary market it could very well be in the $500-$1,000 range. Also, the set is really meant to be an educational prop for teachers, so even in Panama its availability will likely be limited.

On the positive side, because the set uses simple elements and a fairly straightforward design, LEGO fans should be able to replicate it without much difficulty. So if you don’t care for the box and original instructions, you might want to take up the challenge to build your own LEGO Panama Canal. The price should also be much less if you build the set yourself.

And if you are interested – especially if you are a teacher – you can also take a look at the LEGO Education website to learn more about what they offer. For adults, LEGO has another educational program called LEGO Serious Play (click on link to visit their website) with sets that can be found under the LEGO Serious Play section of the Online LEGO Shop.


What do you think? How do you like the LEGO Education Panama Canal? Would you be interested in buying it? Or are you inspired to build your own? Do you think LEGO should release similar educational sets in their regular product lines? Feel free to share your thoughts and discuss in the comment section below! 😉

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{ 8 comments… add one }
  • TheBrickLot November 23, 2016, 10:09 AM

    I love the gear ratios and the mechanism, can’t wait to see the inside to see if they used a linear actuator. Oh, also I’m selling my Statue of Liberty! http://www.ebay.com/itm/132009319655?ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1555.l2649

    • admin November 23, 2016, 1:21 PM

      Looks like your Statue of Liberty is in excellent condition. Good luck with the sale! Make sure you have the package fully insured before shipping it out the buyer. With something so expensive it gives you peace of mind.

      • TheBrickLot November 23, 2016, 1:46 PM

        Oh yes I know, we have plenty of bubble wrap. And yes it was opened but, NEVER BUILT till this memorial day. 😀

        • admin November 23, 2016, 2:04 PM

          Yes, packing good is important, but also make sure you fully insure it. That’s what I meant. 😉

  • Harry Klinkhamer November 23, 2016, 1:34 PM

    I’m looking for ways to teach students about early canal history in the U.S. and would love to see the instructions to try and make a version of the Illinois & Michigan Canal.

    • admin November 23, 2016, 1:37 PM

      Harry, the set is officially getting released at the end of December. It’s quite possible that at that time LEGO will make the instructions available. If not, I’m certain that LEGO fans who are able to get the set will scan and share the instructions. If I see the instructions show up anywhere I will post a link here, so keep an eye out. 🙂

  • admin November 24, 2016, 3:14 PM

    UPDATE: I was contacted by someone who works at the Panama Canal, and have a couple of them on sale listed on eBay. They are pricey, but the seller also accept offers. Here is the link: LEGO PANAMA CANAL ON EBAY

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