Launched at the Sustainable Brands Conference in Paris, prototypes have been shaped in collaboration with blind associations from Denmark, Brazil, the UK, and Norway.
“With thousands of audiobooks and computer programs now available, fewer kids are learning to read Braille,” says Philippe Chazal, treasurer of the European Blind Union. “This is particularly critical when we know that Braille users often are more independent, have a higher level of education and better employment opportunities. We strongly believe LEGO Braille Bricks can help boost the level of interest in learning Braille, so we’re thrilled that the LEGO Foundation is making it possible to further this concept and bring it to children around the world.”
The LEGO Foundation and LEGO Group are working on a new way to help blind and visually impaired kids learn through play — LEGO Braille Bricks.
Posted by The Toy Book on Wednesday, 24 April 2019
LEGO Braille Bricks will be molded with the same number of studs used for individual letters and numbers in the Braille alphabet, while remaining fully compatible with the LEGO System in play. To ensure the tool is inclusive allowing sighted teachers, students and family members to interact on equal terms, each brick will also feature a printed letter or character.
Following testing this year, the official LEGO Braille Bricks kit is expected to launch in 2020. It will contain approximately 250 LEGO Braille Bricks covering the full alphabet, numbers 0-9, select math symbols, and inspiration for teaching and interactive games.
“Blind and visually impaired children have dreams and aspirations for their future just as sighted children” added John Goodwin, CEO of the LEGO Foundation. “They have the same desire and need to explore the world and socialize through play, but often face involuntary isolation as a consequence of exclusion from activities. In the LEGO Foundation, we believe children learn best through play and in turn develop the breadth of skills, such as creativity, collaboration and communication, that they need in the post 4th Industrial Revolution. With this project, we are bringing a playful and inclusive approach to learning Braille to children. I hope children, parents, caregivers, teachers and practitioners worldwide will be as excited as we are, and we can’t wait to see the positive impact.”