Review: The Child Development Real Care Baby Program
By Olivia Wall
As a part of the Child Development class, students are given an animatronic baby doll that is supposed simulate caring for a live child. Students must feed, burp, rock, and change the baby’s diapers. These actions are recorded through a device the students wear on their wrist that when rubbed across the baby’s chest or backside, the baby recognizes it is being cared for. The Real Care baby program is offered through a company called RealityWorks. According to the RealityWorks website, their mission is “Bettering Lives Through our Work – to improve the human condition around the globe by enabling educators to show the probable outcomes of behaviors and choices”. I can tell you, they are definitely living out their mission.
I took the baby on the afternoon of Monday May 5 and was finished with it the morning of Thursday May 8. His name was Roger and he was given to me to make my life difficult. Not only was it extremely hard to carry around a giant car seat with a baby and a diaper bag, but I also had to deal with the stares and the multiple questions. I must have said “don’t worry, its fake!” at least twenty times in those three full days. Overall, the baby wasn’t difficult to care for; he was more just a hassle to travel with. He barely cried and when he did, he was easily soothed. Senior Kelly Gallagher also participated in the RealCare baby program. She said “I wasn’t expected it to be so much work to care for an electronic baby doll. It definitely made me more aware of the difficulties of being a mom.”
As stated before, part of the mission of RealityWorks is to show the probable outcomes of behaviors and choices. I was definitely warned. Waking up at 3 am to feed a baby isn’t an ideal way to spend a Tuesday night when I have to go to school the next day. Although babies are super cute and super fun, it can wait quite a few years.