On Wednesday, October 27, students of child development teacher Danelle Manship’s first period class held a baby shower to reveal the gender of and to celebrate a special, upcoming assignment. Starting the following Friday, students would begin taking home a joyful bundle of plastic and computer parts, in the annual “computerized baby” assignment.
Manship has five babies in total. Each is programmed through a website to cry whenever she cues them to. The babies turn on Friday evening at 4 p.m. and off again on the following Sunday at 10 p.m. During this time the parent is expected to care for the baby.
Each student wears a wristband with a “fob” they can chime whenever they care for the baby. When it cries, they will either have to give it a bottle or change its diaper. Both are censored to show the action of the baby and record it to the website.
It is also a commitment with reputable consequence. Another part of the project is to take the babies out to three different, public locations throughout the weekend and to record the reactions of people around them.
“I want my students to learn the responsibilities and time commitment that comes with having a child,” said Manship.
Story by Joz Kempf