Madison Miller/staff photo                                Aleana Roberts tries out the Jelly Jolts’ braille menu at Molly Moon’s on Feb. 23. From left: Roberts, Sanj Saini, Varnika Bhargava and Katiali Singh.

Madison Miller/staff photo Aleana Roberts tries out the Jelly Jolts’ braille menu at Molly Moon’s on Feb. 23. From left: Roberts, Sanj Saini, Varnika Bhargava and Katiali Singh.

LWSD teens reveal braille menu at Molly Moon’s in Redmond

From 3-5 p.m. on Feb. 23, all sales from Molly Moon’s went to the Lighthouse for the Blind.

Six Lake Washington School District (LWSD) middle school students saw the fruits of their labor as they watched Aleana Roberts, a blind teacher from Seattle, use their braille menu for the first time.

The Jelly Jolts #39887 made up of Anika Joshi, Sawar Saini, Varnika Bhargava, Sanj Saini, Katiali Singh and Leisha Chabungbam have teamed up with Molly Moon’s Homemade Ice Cream in Redmond to create a braille menu for those in the community who are blind and visually impaired.

The project has been almost a year in the making. The Jelly Jolts are part of For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST), a nonprofit STEM-engagement program for kids worldwide. Within FIRST, the girls are part of a program called First Lego League (FLL) and as a team, participated in the City Shaper Challenge.

The challenge compelled students to identify a real problem in their community and find a solution.

The problem the Jelly Jolts identified: There aren’t enough restaurants that provide braille menus for the blind and visually impaired.

The solution: Make a braille menu that can adapt and serve the blind and visually impaired in the best way possible.

Their research concluded that about 10 percent of restaurants have braille menus. After reaching out to 30 local Eastside and Seattle restaurants about their idea, Molly Moon’s in Redmond showed the greatest interest.

Their next step was to learn more about the blind and visually impaired. The Jelly Jolts visited The Lighthouse for the Blind, Inc. in Seattle. Sawar Saini said she learned that people who are blind and visually impaired like to feel secure and confident and that having a braille menu would help them be able to place an order without having to ask someone to read the menu multiple times.

The Jelly Jolts partnered with Braille Works in order to print the menus in a more timely manner. They have been funded through LWSD.

In addition to the braille menus, the Jelly Jolts developed a QR code to help those who can’t read braille. The QR code is on the front page of the first-ever Molly Moon’s braille menu.

“The Jelly Jolts have worked hard this year to create a braille menu that lists our always flavors and toppings for our shop so that blind and vision impaired customers can more easily access our menu,” Molly Moon’s stated in an Instagram post. “They worked with the Lighthouse for the Blind to create an accurate menu and then with the help of a generous teacher with access to a braille printer, printed them.”

The braille menu debuted Feb. 23. For two hours, 100 percent of Molly Moon’s Redmond’s sales went to The Lighthouse for the Blind.

At the debut, the girls saw the menu work in action.

Roberts was one of the first to try it.

“It feels like I get to participate,” she said. “It let’s me be able to take my time and order what I want.”

Roberts said she was surprised by how descriptive the menu was. “It’s so interesting that they describe each flavor,” she said. “This is cool.”

Her only recommendation was creating a table of contents. “This would help in being able to better navigate the menu so I don’t have to read the whole menu to get to the section I want.”

Watching Roberts use the braille menu was especially rewarding to the girls.

“I feel so proud,” Anika said. “I’m so glad we were able to make an impact.”


In consideration of how we voice our opinions in the modern world, we’ve closed comments on our websites. We value the opinions of our readers and we encourage you to keep the conversation going.

Please feel free to share your story tips by emailing editor@redmond-reporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.redmond-reporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 300 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it.

Madison Miller/staff photo                                Leisha Chabungbam shows a customer how the braille menu works at Molly Moon’s on Feb. 23.

Madison Miller/staff photo Leisha Chabungbam shows a customer how the braille menu works at Molly Moon’s on Feb. 23.

Madison Miller/staff photo                                The Jelly Jolts #39887 debuted their braille menu at Molly Moon’s on Feb. 23.

Madison Miller/staff photo The Jelly Jolts #39887 debuted their braille menu at Molly Moon’s on Feb. 23.

More in Life

2021 Toyota Sienna Platinum hybrid minivan
Car review: 2021 Toyota Sienna Platinum hybrid minivan

By Larry Lark, contributor Minivans. They were at the top of the… Continue reading

2021 Honda Ridgeline AWD Sport
Car review: 2021 Honda Ridgeline AWD Sport

By Larry Lark, contributor Honda’s Ridgeline is the perfect vehicle for anyone… Continue reading

2021 Genesis GV80 Prestige
Car review: 2021 Genesis GV80 Prestige

By Larry Lark, contributor Genesis is branching out. With the introduction of… Continue reading

2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness. Courtesy photo
Car review: 2022 Subaru Outback Wilderness

By Larry Lark, contributor Residents of the PNW are no strangers to… Continue reading

2021 McLaren GT. Courtesy photo
Car review: 2021 McLaren GT

By Larry Lark, contributor I’m not sure words can do the 2021… Continue reading

2022 Kia Carnival SX. Courtesy photo
Car review: 2022 Kia Carnival SX

By Larry Lark, contributor It’s the way of the world. As old… Continue reading

Car review: 2021 Toyota Venza Limited
Car review: 2021 Toyota Venza Limited

By Larry Lark, contributor Many people are unfamiliar with Toyota’s Venza, but… Continue reading

Car review: 2021 Lexus LC 500
Car review: 2021 Lexus LC 500

By Larry Lark, contributor I can’t think of many more fun ways… Continue reading

2021 Volkswagen Arteon 2.0T SE
Car review: 2021 Volkswagen Arteon 2.0T SE

By Larry Lark, contributor The mid-size 2021 Volkswagen Arteon 2.0T SE has… Continue reading

2022 Honda Civic Touring
Car review: 2022 Honda Civic Touring

By Larry Lark, contributor You’ve all heard and read the idiom attributed… Continue reading

2022 Hyundai Tucson Limited
Car review: 2022 Hyundai Tucson Limited

By Larry Lark, contributor Hyundai’s “horse” in the compact sports utility market… Continue reading