toddler girlIt’s been a week since the New York Times had a front page article on “No Einstein in The Crib? Get a Refund.” I was so amazed at Disney’s offer to give a refund for Baby Einstein DVD’s which the article deemed “a tacit admission that they did not increase infant intellect,” I wanted to thank the child advocacy groups that worked hard to get Disney to act so I decided to write a letter to the editor. Just so you know that this isn’t my usual practice, this was the first such letter I have ever written.

The New York Times called me two days later to confirm that I had written the letter and ask if they could print it. Of course I said yes and it was in Wednesday’s paper.

I have had some interesting reactions to my letter:

  • members of my profession have thanked me for representing other speech pathologists who work hard to get the message out about the importance of talking, reading and playing with your infant to build language, not putting them in front of a baby video to increase intellect.
  • Parents who have said, “Baby Einstein was the best video to mesmerize my child so I could get something done. I NEVER was under the impression that it would make her smarter though.”
  • “The irony is that I Baby Einstein’ed James a lot and he was a VERY late talker. His younger sister just cruised around with James and me and observed and listened. She was never interested in those videos. Ironically, she always has and still does have something to say about everything!”
  • “I love having my feelings about infant and early childhood education, validated by someone who actually knows something about it.”
  • From a children’s author: “Fabulous and right on the mark!”
  • “Great letter! I had read the article last week and was glad I never opened the many Baby Einstein DVD’s we got as baby gifts!”
For information on how to receive your refund and understand what led up to the decision, due to the hard work of a group called “Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood, go to their website at www.