By Natalie Allen | Staff Writer

Johnson has long offered the Child Development course to influence better decision-making and putting teenage pregnancy in a realistic context. However, the routine appearance of infant carriers has yet to lose its bemusing novelty.

“I think it really teaches you that you don’t want to have a baby,” junior Audrey Rodriguez said. “I mean, that’s what it’s supposed to do. It really accomplishes that.”

The course requires students enrolled to care for an electronic baby doll that functions like a real newborn child.

“It has two different colored diapers that are interchangeable. It also has a bottle that works with a magnet,” Rodriguez said.

But a bottle alone is not enough.

“If you don’t hold the baby while you’re feeding it, it will start whining,” she added.

The amount of time that elapses before the caretaker responds to the baby’s cries and the amount of nurturing behavior given is recorded by the mechanized infant.

“If it starts crying, I just get up and sort of do what it wants,” Rodriguez said. “Another girl actually killed hers. If you kill your baby, you get a zero.”

At first, students were ecstatic to be receiving a realistic, animatronic baby to carry around with them. However, they quickly came to terms with the challenges of parenting.

“I was really excited, and everyone else was really excited. It’s just cute,” Rodriguez recalled. “I don’t know, there isn’t really an attraction. It just becomes un-fun.”

The junior sees one overall lesson in the experience of quasi-parenting.

“The lesson is ‘don’t have sex’,” she said. “Don’t do things to put yourself in that situation.”

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About The Author

I am a senior at Johnson High School and I am one of the Arts & Entertainment editors for our online publication staff. SAIL: AWOLNATION.

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