This morning my wee one decided that 5:30 a.m. would be the perfect time to wake up and play with his Baby Mozart turtle crib toy. This “educational” item is a soft turtle with an “aquarium” where his shell should be. He has various buttons that, when pushed, allow baby to be charmed and appropriately stimulated by a variety of carefully selected classical tunes. This early morning concert wouldn’t have been SO bad, except that K has decided that he is a fan of one particular selection that this thing plays. I have no idea if it is a sonata or an etude or what…all I know is that K will press the starfish button on the turtle in 4 quick successions to essentially fast forward to this song. The second the snippet ended I could hear *pushpushpushpush* and voila! The song would begin anew.
Long story short, anyone who claims that classical music is soothing, relaxing and intellectually stimulating has never had to listen to the same dang song 100 times in a row during the hours of breaking dawn. I finally threw in the towel around play #456 which occurred at approximately 6:15 a.m. I retrieved my little Mozart lover from the orchestra pit of his crib and plopped him into bed with me. The exorbitant amount of money we pay to Comcast Cable paid off this morning because they have 24 hour children’s programming! I turned on Dora the Explorer and went back to sleep.
I woke up at 8:00 to find my little angel in essentially the same position, still watching Dora. Whatever guilt I felt about parking my under-2-year-old in front of the TV was assuaged by the knowledge that had I NOT gotten that extra 2 hours of sleep I would have been a borderline psycho at the breakfast table. So let’s recap: Classical music – irritating and dangerous to children as it can cause severe anger in parents. Children’s television – soothing and miraculous. And truly – I think I could actually cite Dora as a child safety device since it allowed me to gain the aforementioned extra sleep time.
After 4 kids I’ve heard all the research and gone through all the stages of requisite guilt that accompany knowing you are perhaps the only person poisoning young minds because everyone else with children under 2 is entertaining them with balls of yarn, wooden cylinders and other Waldorf-inspired, etsy-made toys. However, I have to say that after locating this fantastic piece of valid research done by a Fortune 50 company, I feel somewhat vindicated. Who says that research has to be current to be valid? Not me! This ad makes me feel good about the choices I make as a parent and really, isn’t that what research is for?
Allow me to highlight some of the finer points (more…)