Monday, July 19, 2010

Baby Einstein

I am a HUGE fan of Baby Einstein. I know not everyone is, but I definately am. I know the pending lawsuits against the makers and marketers of Baby Einstein. But none of that matters when a mother needs a few moments of respite from a high-energy child!

I've done all the research on the impact television has on children under two. I also think people make way too big a deal about the effects of television and videos on children. I really don't believe that a little television is going to have adverse effects on Brady. Many people decide not to let their children watch television and that is just fine; I hope people understand my decision to let him. When he gets up and dances to "Word World", learns about spelling, remembers animal names, and develops favorite characters, I view it as a good thing.

From the first few months of Brady's life, he's been watching Baby Einstein. No matter what he's doing, if the World or Neighborhood Animals videos come on, he sits perfectly still and is mesmorized. This has been a wonderful tool in our household! I don't know how or why some animals, puppets, and babies have that effect on him, but I don't care - it works. And beyond the "sit-still" factor, Brady has learned a lot from these videos! I can talk about animals and make sounds all I want, but when he actually sees them in action on his television is when that animal becomes real and memorable to him. And living in Iowa, we aren't exactly able to go see the dolphins, bears, monkeys, parrots, etc. that he gets to see in these videos.

Sadly, some people think it is necessary to sue Baby Einstein because it was originally marketed as having positive effects on babies' brainwaves, and thus actually making children smarter. While I don't know all of the details, I think this is just a shame. Any parent who buys a video believing it will turn his or her child into a genius is just silly. Parents who are looking for a "quick fix" for their child's intelligence without actually putting in the time to teach them should maybe reconsider the parenting thing. No video will ever be a viable substitute for active parenting. I don't think the makers of Baby Einstein intended for it to be, so however misleading the marketing may have seemed, maybe we should be wagging our fingers at the parents who actually thought it would do these things.


Jess said...

I haven't heard that about Baby Einstein being sued but I totally agree with you. Videos shouldn't be a substitute for teaching our children. Carter has learned a lot from watching T.V and video's in moderation!

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