Teen pregnancy is an issue which parents and teachers have to approach at a certain point because it is crucial in the life of teenagers. Rules and safety methods must be explained to them, as well as the risks they are exposed to and the responsibility implied by turning into a parent, especially so early in your life. Baby dolls simulators are a common method in schools, but is it effective?
Earlier this week, a new study was published in the journal Lancet, according to which teen pregnancy rates are high, and baby doll simulator exercises in schools don’t seem to stop the phenomenon. What’s more, the study actually points out that the safety exercise increases the phenomenon.
Many schools approve of this task when students have to take care of a baby doll simulator, pretending it is a real baby. What students have to do in order to pass is to stop the doll from crying at random times, feed it, and put it to sleep, which is supposed to make them realize how hard it is to take care of a baby and that they have to be responsible.
Sally A. Brinkman was the leader of the study which proved the inefficiency of baby doll simulators. The trial implied monitoring 3,000 Australian teen and preteen girls, aged 13 to 15. They were divided into two groups, and one of them had classes about sex education, while the other one followed another educational program, which included the task of taking care of baby doll simulators. The results of monitoring the health status of girls showed that for the first group, the rate of teen pregnancy was 11%. For the other group, it was up to 6% higher, namely 17%.
Lead researcher Sally A. Brinkman thinks that the method with baby doll simulators actually backfired, as the teen girls seemed to enjoy the experience, and craved for a real one. This could be a possible explanation for the high rates of teen pregnancy with the students who have this type of exercise at school.
On the other hand, it is quite obvious for everyone that a simulated experience can’t be compared to a real one; consequently, dolls can’t be compared to real babies. Teen parents must have seen it for themselves when facing reality.
The Australian study on teen pregnancy was carried out by specialists in several universities of the country.
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