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I just got the 26 DVD Baby Einstein collection for my little one and I'm a little surprised that there is no recommended viewing order.

I can't imagine that learning numbers, colors, sounds, etc. are all equally recommended to start with. There is no numbering on the disks, but there is something like a color code... at least my observation is such that the disks have labels printed monochromatically, some are blue, green, red, or brown.

The one called "Baby's First Sounds" has no language selection feature, but appears to be teaching baby how to make sounds like "aah" or "buh" but is associating these sounds with English French and Spanish words equally. For example "ba ba baaaby", "ah ah los abeha", "ah ah anyu". What am I missing here? Is it teaching multiple languages? That doesn't seem very primary.

On the other hand, the "Baby Van Gogh" teaches colors at a very primary level, as expected.

What order should these be viewed in?

EDIT 1

I did some more research. The color coding is to denote volume. Volume 1 has a recommended age range of 0 to 24 months. Volume 2 has a recommended age range of 6 to 18 months. I don't know about the others.

Baby's First Sounds, the DVD I started with is the black sheep of the series. Widely recognized as a terrible product for teaching baby's first sounds with 5 different languages mixed in a random.

Thus far the viewing order appears to be: Volume 1, Volume 2, the other volumes at random minus "Baby's First Sounds". Baby's First Sounds goes in the trash.

EDIT 2

Assume my child is whatever age is appropriate for watching TV, that's the purpose of this question.

Feel free to recommend an order that specifically omits disks of questionable quality, or even omitting the video/sound of other disks, etc.

Much like most popular Star Wars viewing orders omit Episode 1, my incomplete "so far" viewing order would be:
1. Anything with focus on music. Possibly only with sound.
2. ?????
...
Specifically Omit: Baby's First Sounds, as it is garbage.

I am hoping for an answer from someone who knows the content of these DVDs and can at least minimally comment on said content.

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    We just sort of put them in at random. I have no evidence they made a difference. – Kai Qing Jul 1 '16 at 23:43
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Like any of these sorts of products there is no evidence that they are effective - and like many 'educational' toys they exist to make parents feel good rather than for the benefit of children.

The American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend any TV screen time for young children under the age of two. The evidence suggests that watching TV is bad for development of children under 24 months and the baby Einstein series is mentioned specifically in a number of studies leading to an offer of a refund in 2009 because the products were found to be ineffective. Other reports suggest that it may even be worse than that as infants learned six to eight fewer new vocabulary words for every hour of baby DVDs that were watched than babies who had not watched videos (Zimmerman and Christakis, 2007.)

The preference from an evidence basis standpoint is that the best order is not to play them at all, and in the case that you can't return the set to give your child the box that they came in as it will be more educational than the contents.

It's not all bad news for TV and there are some better outcomes at 2-3 years of age, where there is some evidence that good quality educational programming like Sesame Street does have some positive outcomes in terms of helping children 'fast map' vocabulary, when backed up by a live interaction and engagement. As to if the series mentioned here is 'good quality' or not I'm not in a position to comment.

  • This doesn't really answer the question that was asked. – Acire Jul 6 '16 at 10:33
  • @Erica it could be a XY problem – the_lotus Jul 6 '16 at 11:21
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    If you assume my child is 2-3 years of age, does that change your answer? If I was asking someone what viewing order they would recommend for say... a group of loosely affiliated action films, the recommendation could certainly be "don't watch any of them, TV is bad for your brain". A better answer would be from someone who knows the content of the films, and can comment on an actual viewing order. For example, the Star Wars "Machete Order" specifies a viewing order that omits one of the films. – Gorchestopher H Jul 6 '16 at 11:33
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    It does IMHO - the question is what order has the best outcome... and the answer, backed up by evidence, is that not using them has the best outcome. – James Snell Jul 6 '16 at 11:33
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    The point of the question is clearly to determine the order that is best for educational purposes. "It doesn't matter, these videos aren't educational for the age range they are generally marketed to, no matter the viewing order" is a valid response. – swbarnes2 Jul 6 '16 at 18:43
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They can be watched in any order.

They would be numbered if there was a preferred order.

At this age it really doesn't matter - your child will get numbers, shapes, sounds etc in a way that seems to work.

  • They are color coded, which I assume is in lieu of numbering. I did more research, they are color coded by "Volume", each volume has a different age recommendation – Gorchestopher H Jul 3 '16 at 23:35

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