Since launching the toy bricks we all know and love back in 1958, LEGO has given millions of kids around the world an oh-so-fun way to explore their creativity and ingenuity.
Now, more than 60 years later, LEGO has announced plans to enable kids who are blind or partially sighted to get even more out of this tactile toy through the launch of LEGO Braille Bricks.
Currently in the pilot stage, the braille bricks are designed to expose children who are blind to braille at an early age in a fun, engaging way.
Each brick is moulded with the same number of studs used for the individual letters and numbers in the braille alphabet, while remaining fully compatible with the LEGO system. Each brick will also include a printed letter so family members and teachers can assist students with sight loss as they learn.
“[Children who are blind] 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," said John Goodwin, LEGO Foundation CEO. "…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.”
LEGO Braille Bricks are currently being tested in various languages and locations around the world. Consumers can expect the finished product – which will contain approximately 250 bricks featuring letters, numbers and math symbols – to hit store shelves in 2020.