Program’s aging babies causing problems


Samantha Velarde

Preparing babies for their weekend parents.

Samantha Velarde, Editor-in-Chief

Changing diapers and crying robotic babies teach child development students the importance of childcare. The only thing missing may be the baby. Between malfunctions and  worn equipment students are having a hard time.

Students are excited about the baby experience but are disappointed by the glitches.

“The baby’s head and neck were fragile and you have to be careful because they are a lot older,” senior Karla Ocana said.

These dolls show students how to be responsible for children’s malfunctions interfere with the learning process.

“One guy took it home a couple of weekends ago and it started crying at the time it was supposed to wake up and then after he took care of the baby and everything it didn’t cry again. (There is) some sort of glitch somewhere in the computer inside the baby,” childcare development teacher Yvonne Salcido said.

These mechanical babies can be replaced but range in cost from $929 to $1099 each.

“When we bought the classroom set and the cabinet seven years ago, it was $25,000,” Salcido said. “To replace one of those babies especially, if it’s lost, stolen, or damaged the parent signs a permission form which is actually a financial responsibility form and it costs $864.”

Students are put on a waiting list since there is only a class set of 30 babies for three classes that range from 20 to 32 students.

“In my junior year there were more than 30 students and we didn’t have enough babies for everyone so everyone waited two weeks to get a baby,” Ocana said.

Malfunction can be caused by the baby’s sensor.

“Sometimes the baby would cry or it would give me a sign that it needed my attention but it wasn’t because I needed to take care of it, it was just something that would go off on its own,” senior Mariela Canava said.

Sensor malfunction is due to the loss of connection and the babies being worn down.

“I would use the sensor to let the baby know I’m there with them but the sensor would not respond or beep,” Ocana said.

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