Bricks in Braille

I read a press release recently from the LEGO® Group that had me somewhat excited, and even feeling a little warm inside. This past week, the LEGO® Foundation announced its partnership with various associations serving visually impaired people around the world. The goal is to test out a new LEGO® product: Braille bricks.

Image credit: LEGO® Group Media Relations, 2019.

In our modern day and age of rampant technological advances, it seems that the number of visually impaired children learning Braille is at a low. But, learning Braille has been correlated with higher independence, as well as overall success in education and professional life. Braille Bricks are meant to promote learning Braille in a fun and interactive way. 


Image credit: LEGO® Group Media Relations, 2019.

The bricks themselves are 100% compatible with the LEGO® System in Play. However, the number of studs on each brick is different. The stud number and placement is representative of a different letter or number in Braille. To make the set completely inclusive, the printed character represented by the Braille studs has also been included on each brick for sighted individuals.


Image credit: LEGO® Group Media Relations, 2019.

I think the best part about Braille Bricks is that they will be free. The product is in the test phase right now at various institutions around the world. The goal is to launch the actual kit in 2020, at which point it will be given away to select institutions working with visually impaired children. If that doesn’t make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside, I don’t know what will.


Image credit: LEGO® Group Media Relations, 2019.

Want to learn more about Braille bricks? You can read the official press release by clicking here. I would also like to hear how you feel about this endeavor, so feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments below.

Until next time,

-Tom

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Reference:

The LEGO® Group Media Relations. 2019. The LEGO Foundation and LEGO Group team up with blind associations to pilot LEGO® Braille Bricks and develop children’s breadth of skills. The LEGO® Group. https://www.lego.com/en-us/aboutus/news-room/2019/april/lego-braille-bricks/ (Accessed: 04/27/2019)