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NYT: Baby Einstein Not Yielding Einsteins!

New York Times article on October 23, 2009 -  No Einstein in Your Crib? Get a Refund by TAMAR LEWIN

When I first read this article I had mixed emotions.  Initially I started an internal dialogue on how litigious a society we live in and how cliche the term ‘litigious’ has become.

Next, I was remembering my first experience with Baby Einstein – it was one of the first few months after my daughter was born when I sat her in the infant bouncy chair, positioned her in front of the television, and pushed play on the DVD player.  I had rather level expectations – I knew there would be classical music, I knew there would colors and shapes, but I didn’t know that there would be low-quality toys getting featured (walking robots, rolling balls, jumping frogs, etc.).

Many questions came to mind – what the hell is this? who thought this would be a good use of film? whoever came up with this is both an idiot and a genius.

While I never thought that these videos alone would make my child the next Einstein (although I’m not sure, there may be a later set of DVDs that teach astrophysics and theories on antimatter, set to the music of Bach and Bon Jovi), but I didn’t imagine that there was some type of inherent educational benefit to these discs over Sponge-Bob or Barney.

In the end, we didn’t stick with Baby Einstein videos too long – we moved to Sesame Street and the various shows on Noggin/Nick Jr, mostly for my own sanity.

Did people really think their kids would become geniuses?  What idiots.

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