Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Bush pushes Baby Einstein

It is appalling that President Bush used the founder of Baby Einstein as an example of American entrepreneurial zeal in his State of the Union address. It's like some intrusive product placement. Worst of all, he has turned the annual address to the nation into an infomercial promoting DVDs for infants and toddlers, a product that is contrary to the recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics* that children under age 2 have no "screen time" at all in front of a television or computer. Not one study has shown any benefit to children from these materials (which is why they say they make no "educational" claims and admitted to me that their materials are not "research-based"). Several studies have documented deficits in what children learn from them compared to what they learn from direct observation and interaction.

A President who is married to a former teacher and host of the National Book Festival should know better. No child left behind? Then maybe he could recommend that parents read to their children instead of sitting them down in front of the television.

*Thanks to my commenter Bryan for correcting the name of the organization.

1 comment:

Bryan said...

That would be the American Academy of Pediatrics if I'm not mistaken.