Guest Author - Bonnie Sayers
Three years ago there was a segment on the local ABC news featuring the ladies behind this video, Calm Baby™. They are sisters-in-law with one the parent to triplets and the other has a toddler and an infant. They made this video for their children and when they realized how effective this video was they made it available online at a website located at www.calmbaby.tv.
Included in the price of $14.95 plus shipping and handling is an audio cd with twenty-three tracks covering thirty-four minutes of lullabies, nursery songs and classical music. Another option to order Calm Baby™ is to call 1-800-236-9253. At the end of the video the credits show that most of the production on the video involved family of these two women.
The website gives a sampling of the music you will hear when viewing the video as well as some of the images found on the tape. Nicholas was seven when we got this and said that the music was lovely and several times commented on the cute toys profiled in Calm Baby™. His only complaint at the time was that he got dizzy at one of the first images of some spinning and twirling of lights.
Throughout the Calm Baby™ video are images of stuffed and rubber animals in various water arrangements. The rubber duckie is one of them plus a stuffed duck that has a continuing story in a few segments. The duck is like a puppet and he pushes a small purple bed, this is similar to a dollhouse item. Before the duck shows up again the screen has a white background with blue coloring at the bottom similar to waves floating around and some classical music accompanying the image.
Nicholas would say as we were watching the white and blue screen that the duck was coming next and wondering what he would have with him. The next time around the duck is carrying in his mouth two small purple pillows and then brings two more to place on the bed. Nicholas was not happy to see the duck carry these in his mouth! The next visit with the duck he is carrying a blanket and placing it on the bed and then he leaves, but each time we see him he ends with a big yawn. Clearly this is to get the viewer interested in falling asleep and doing this in steps and sequences.
Nicholas said the next time would be a stuffed duck to sleep in and sure enough he was right. His next guess was that the duck would have a book to read, but in the end he was lying in the bed with black glasses to cover his eyes, and yawned one last time.
There is no speaking in the Calm Baby™ video, only the vocals to four songs I believe, Rain Rain Go Away, Itsy Bitsy Spider, Row Row Row Your Boat and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. For the Rain song there were a few kids shown from the back looking and touching a window while it was raining outside. The boat song showed toys that a child would play in the tub with and there was a twinkling show with an array of lights and colors for the star song.
The spider song showed a green and then blue spider that was like a stuffed animal but moved by a string going up and down in a room. Some of the other toys or images shown were the kind of toys that are attached to a mobile over a crib. One was a pretty red, white and black animal that my son just adored.
The images are of bubbles, water fountains, rain dropping on roses, umbrellas opening and twirling to the rain. The umbrella sequence moved perfectly to the music and then a few times there were the colored balls that you see in ball pits, but they were in a two- tiered fountain and the music and rain drops moved in rhythm perfectly.
The toys that my kids play with are very similar to the whale they showed sitting on top of a rock with the water flowing behind. There are sound effects when a stuffed white seal is moving up and down with water images behind it. Also images of puppets are shown periodically in Calm Baby™ The segments moved along quickly with no lulls and arranged in a nice flowing style.
There is one scene with a giant clam opening up with bubbles coming out and others showing the rocks and toys in aquariums. A child’s hand is seen placing stuffed fish inside an aquarium that was handmade with colorful material. Thirty minutes of these arrangements goes by fairly quickly and quite possibly puts a smaller infant or toddler to sleep with the calming effects of the images and nursery songs.
When our Family Friends volunteer inquired as to what would be an appropriate gift for Matthew, who was six at the time, I told her about Calm Baby™ and the website to learn more about it. Matthew has at times popped out a coherent word and when viewing the Calm Baby™ video he uttered the word “rain”. Both Nicholas and I heard it and were happy that watching the video pleased him.
In fact he loves to rewind it and watch certain segments of water and rain continually. Their website has customer testimonials and I have sent them email indicating that this should be marketed to the autism community. I feel that teachers, therapists and others who work with special needs kids will enjoy playing Calm Baby™ and see the reactions of the children plus be able to play the CD and use it as a form of music therapy. I was told when the school was practicing for the holiday festivities that Matthew beamed when Mozart was played.
Although this is called Calm Baby™ with the recommended ages being zero to 36 months, it is mentioned for young children. I can attest to this being well suited for my children and those who enjoy visual images that are vibrant, as well as hearing rain droplets hitting the pavement. We enjoyed watching sunflowers and roses as the rain dropped on them and the colorful twirling of the umbrella.
This is a very relaxing and soothing video that could be played for children while parent is taking care of chores and before nap or bedtime. Older children will like to watch the various images that go by and remark on the colors and sounds and possibly sing along with the nursery songs.
I would certainly consider purchasing this for a baby shower gift.
Adapted from a previously published review on Epinions
Calm Baby™ is also available at Amazon.
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