The Baby Einstein story is one of those inspiring stories of a young mother who wanted to be able to share a world of discovery with her baby - exposing her to the surrounding world by using real-world objects, music, art, language, science, poetry and nature in enriching, engaging, and playful ways.
The History of Baby Einstein
In 1996, Julie Aigner-Clark and her husband, Bill, created and edited the first Baby Einstein video in their basement and Julie created the logo at her kitchen table. On January 31st, 1997, the first Baby Einstein video was released and placed in 36 stores. Later that same year, BabyEinstein.com was launched and they were on their way. In 1998 the first of many Baby Einstein music videos was released and Baby Mozart CDs became best sellers and the Baby Mozart video was named Video of the Year by Parents Magazine. Over the next couple of years Baby Einstein books, CDs and videos entered the market and in 2001, Baby Einstein was acquired by Disney. From the very beginning Baby Einstein has grown and developed as a company that provides quality educational and learning materials and interactive play opportunities as well as toys. More recently, Baby Einstein has even begun a line of baby gear. In 2005, Baby Einstein leveraged its success and developed media and products for preschoolers, called Little Einstein.
Baby Einstein Toys - Made by Others
You can find Baby Einstein games and toys in children's toy stores, department stores, and many other places around the world. Baby Einstein toys are manufactured by companies other than Baby Einstein; however, the company does do all it can to help parents find the toys that go along with the various DVDs they produce. One of the favorite toys this year, even though they are not produced directly by Baby Einstein, are the Baby Einstein puppets, which can even be used in the bathtub.
If you're interested in Baby Einstein, youTube is a great place for you to see samples of the videos. A Baby Einstein youTube has been set up and you can not only view some of the DVDs, but you can learn about Baby Einstein products. Learn how to create a Baby Einstein birthday part for your little one using the Baby Einstein products. The Baby Einstein Discovery kit contains a DVD, a music CD and a book or Discovery cards to play baby games with your baby or toddler.
The Screen Time Debate
Baby Einstein and Sesame Street have been subjects of an ongoing debate about the effect of television watching on infants and toddlers. The question as to whether an infant's ability to speak and understand was affected by watching such educational programming between six months and two years. Since Baby Einstein DVDs are, effectively, television programs, the question as to their efficacy was addressed. There have been several studies done on the subject of infant television viewing, and the latest one - a study of 800 infants who were followed for three years, showed that average or slightly higher than average amounts of television viewing had a neutral to no effect on vocabulary development and visual motor ability at age three. The bottom line is that essentially, there are no harmful effects to a child who watches television for a moderate amount of time before the age of three.
In 1999 the American Academy of Pediatrics published their guidelines for media that recommended no screen time for infants under two. This was designed to ensure that parents would not give up direct interaction with their baby in favor of time in front of the tube, effectively using television as a babysitter. The either-or position is a difficult one in a world where many parents feel it is possible to have both one-on-one time and screen time in their baby's life.
Babies need parental involvement; touch, sound, talking, and interaction, in order to grow and develop in a normal way. Television watching, whether it is Baby Einstein or Sesame Street, is something that can be fun for a little one and be part of life's events rather than something that is an either-or proposition.