Should We Have "Baby Think It Over" in Schools? This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.


   Manyschools try to emphasize that teens should not be having sex, but, if they do,they should do it safely. One of their main goals is to prevent students fromgetting pregnant. Years ago, a program called "Baby Think it Over" wasintroduced. It was designed to teach teens the reality of caring for a baby bydesigning a doll that simulates what a real baby is like. The students have to benear the baby at all times and listen for its cries. When it cries, they eitherhave to feed, rock, burp, or change its diaper. If students fail to do so, theyget points deducted from their score. Other point deductions occur when thebaby's head is snapped back, if it is placed in the wrong position, or handledtoo roughly.

I believe this program should be stopped, or at least madeoptional. It is very easy to make mistakes and often difficult to score well. Inaddition to the many ways points can be deducted, the students have to wear awristband with an identity key attached to insert into the baby when it criesbefore they feed it, burp it, etc. If the identity keys are detached from thestudent at any time, they either fail, or have to do the project again. Thismakes it impossible for anyone else to care for the baby.

When I told myparents I was getting "the baby," they didn't care. But when I broughtit home, they started complaining as soon as it began crying. They wereespecially annoyed that I couldn't let anyone else take care of it, which is oneof the main reasons I think the program should be stopped. Many times, studentshave inflexible schedules, and can't be near the baby all the time. When they'redoing the "Baby Think it Over" project, they must alter everythingplanned for that week. I had this problem, too. I ended up having many argumentswith my family over obligatory activities that made it hard for me to care for mybaby. In the end, we had to cancel a pre-paid tennis lesson, and a tutor.

In addition to these inconveniences, the baby also cries in the middle ofthe night, which makes you lose lots of sleep, making it hard to focus on schoolthe next day.

The "Baby Think it Over" program is also anuisance during school. Because the baby cries there too, many teachers getannoyed and ask you to leave. This has often occurred and it seems that manyteachers don't like this program. They complain just like parents. This projectcan, therefore, affect the students' grades too, because they are forced to missclasses. Also, if you have a test, the baby could make you miss that class, aswell as making it almost impossible to study without the baby interrupting everycouple of minutes.

The baby makes it hard to participate in after-schoolsports. Many coaches, including mine, get angry when students have to care forthe baby in the middle of a game or practice.

The "Baby Think itOver" program is one of the worst ways to teach students not to havechildren before they finish school. The baby causes many problems for the studentat home and in school. As a result, instead of its original intent to help astudent, it does the opposite.




This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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This article has 8 comments. Post your own now!

dom972 said...
Apr. 26, 2014 at 8:16 pm
Your article is very interesting but you have to realize that having a baby is not a simple thing. It deals with maturity and responsabilities. What do you think babies are? Toys??? The programme is requiring because parenthood is requiring. Students must think about it!!!!!!!!!
 
CCCC said...
Mar. 3, 2013 at 5:07 pm
That's the whole point of the project. Babies take over your life and you might have to give up things you really want for the child's sake. That's LIFE!
 
shayallen said...
Jul. 12, 2011 at 9:40 pm
yes i do think it is good but one thing i think they should do is let the students keep the baby for a week
 
lourdes123 replied...
Feb. 25, 2012 at 6:13 pm
I know right? That is what I'm saying...
 
just me said...
Apr. 26, 2011 at 1:50 pm

The other problem is That the robot baby is nothink like having a real child to care for.

It is more of a Ball and chain, Used to Frighten Teen agers into not having children.

while in school it is not a good idea to have children. But to make teen beleave they are 'bad' at parenting is not the answer.

a robot is nothing like a real child.

 
Tuesday said...
Jan. 16, 2011 at 11:26 pm
Although this is an interesting viewpoint, I believe it only reinforces the whole program. The intentions are to show a student how life might be if they had a child while attending school. Real babies need what they need when they need it, and they really do cry at night, and they really do always need the right person to take care of them. With that said, it may be annoying for a student who is highly unlikely to have a child while in school. I think the whole point of the program is to discou... (more »)
 
Jcarter123 said...
Feb. 9, 2010 at 10:53 am
I disagree with you, everything you just explained in your article is the reason the babies are sent home with students! To develope an understanding on what it is like to have a baby! When you have a real one it is going to do the same things what if you done have the money for a baby sitter? And when the baby really cries at night? If you really think about what the program is teaching you, you would have a better understanding on why the program helps aid in less teen pregnancys, here's ... (more »)
 
CourtneyRae said...
Nov. 9, 2008 at 1:54 am
I couldn't dissagree more. It isn't hard at all to get an easy score. You have to make arrangements when you have the baby so you are able to take care of the baby. Our school system did it in seventh grade, I didn't think that was effective, and then you can do it again in high school. Most people are sexually active in high school, accidents happen, and you can get pregnant. The 'baby' lets you know what it is like to have a real baby and how you just aren't ready for it. When you have a baby,... (more »)
 
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