Everyday Moments are Teaching Moments

The essence of parenting has been captured on video in 30 seconds.

A group called Born Learning partnered with the Ad Council to produce a series of public service announcements targeting parents of babies, toddlers and preschoolers.

It’s difficult to capture how a person changes when he or she becomes a parent. It’s a paradigm shift not only in priorities, but also how you perceive everything around you.

Check out this 30-second clip of a woman using an ATM.

Update: The Ad Council deleted their great videos described here that were hosted in their Youtube account (while leaving seemingly all of their other videos intact). When I inquired as to why, I received no response. You can still view the videos (and PSAs in other formats) on the Born Learning PSA page, albeit it in the less-accessible Windows Media WMV format that for some odd reason is requiring Java and throws up security warnings when I try to view the videos in Internet Explorer. I get squat trying to view them in Firefox. Oh well. Great PSAs have been trashed. Your mileage may vary…

[Dead Youtube link removed. Try viewing it here.]

Born Learning summarizes the core issue of parenting this way:

"Children are constantly learning, right from birth. Their early years are the foundation for growth and development, and what they learn during those years depends on the experiences they have each and every day. This is our greatest challenge as caregivers, as well as our greatest opportunity."

Check out this woman at a Laundromat:

[Dead Youtube link removed. Try viewing it here.]

Born Learning has a great series of tips on how to encourage learning at home, while traveling, and in public spaces. Parents throw gobs of money at "Einstein," "genius," and "smart" toys,
but fail to realize a child’s greatest source of learning is mom and
dad. You are the interactive toy.

Check out this woman at a grocery store:

[Dead Youtube link removed. Try viewing it here.]

What we’re talking about is the need for parents to look at the world in a different way. Your little one is observing the world with a clean slate. The most mundane details of your day become learning opportunities when you discuss them aloud.

Check out this man reading street signs:

[Dead Youtube link removed. Try viewing it here.]

Sure, these videos are amusing, but they represent a real and ideal approach to parenting. You might quibble that these parents are portrayed in an exaggerated manner, but some parents I know act exactly as depicted. Their kids are the center of their world, and if talking with their kids in public makes them seem weird to bystanders, so be it. Parenting is an egoless act.

Check out this grandmother’s feet:

[Dead Youtube link removed. Try viewing it here.]

Don’t disregard these video depictions because the parents are extremely enthusiastic. It’s fine not to be quite so animated. The point, I think, is to imagine your baby asking "Why?" long before he or she learns to say the word.


7 Responses to “Everyday Moments are Teaching Moments”

  1. RookieMom Heather says:

    I’m laughing, I’m crying (I’m hormonal BTW) but I totally see myself in these.

    February 13th, 2007 at 10:06 am

  2. brettdl says:

    Cute ads.

    February 13th, 2007 at 12:57 pm

  3. Jodi says:

    That is incredibly awesome. Posting it to my blog!

    February 15th, 2007 at 6:00 am

  4. Rick says:

    This is a great approach to parenting – my wife and I are already following this model. I absolutely LOVE it when I hear my wife talking to our new baby, Annie, explaining everything that’s going on around her. Fantastic

    February 15th, 2007 at 12:21 pm

  5. tanyetta says:

    love it all day long. :)

    February 17th, 2007 at 4:56 pm

  6. Judy says:

    I love this too! Kids like nothing better than a running commentary. Now that my kids are older, I find myself doing the same thing with my dog…Maybe she’ll learn how to talk? I’m going to post this to my blog too!!!

    February 19th, 2007 at 6:27 am

  7. Dylan says:

    This is fantastic information to share! Unfortunately I found you after the videos were no longer available, but from the comments I kinda get what they were about.

    Going further than the importance of talking to your baby, is learning that your baby is communicating with you as well…in way more ways than just emotional expression or about getting basic needs met.

    Babies are aware and conscious of having an identity, opinions and have memories of their entire existence to date.

    It’s great to talk to them, but also to listen and respond with the assumption that they understand and have opinions.

    Thanks for posting this one!

    March 29th, 2007 at 1:15 pm

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