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Child development is a class RBHS provides to students who are interested in working with young children sometime in the future. Jessica Olsen, the child development teacher at RBHS, has been teaching this female heavy class about how to work with children for four years now.
The child development students took on the responsibility of a parent to care for baby dolls with real human characteristics for about two days. This at home project gave the students a personal view on how challenging it may be to be someone who spends a lot of time with children.
“It was so tiring, I felt tired all the time,” said sophomore participant Natasha Turner.
The dolls do have a speaker that allows it to cry whenever it needs something, just like a real life child. These real life characteristics encourage the students to try their hardest to handle the dolls with as much care as a real child.
“I do think it will help me in the future for what I want to do,” said Turner.
Olsen said this learning experience gives the students a glimpse of what is really in store for them if they plan on having kids or working with them later in life. This kind of snapshot at life can help the students determine whether or not they are up for the challenge of handling real children.
The dolls are a great improvement compared to other methods Olsen mentioned.
“There are schools I know that have done caring for an egg or a flower, but the babies we have, have definitely changed over time,” said Olsen.
Twenty years ago, the students had a doll that required a key in the back and they would wait for it to need something. Today, the babies are sensitive to almost everything whether it be temperature, getting their clothes changed, and even being in a car seat.