Sincerely Sydney: Child Development provides lessons beyond classroom
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For the next couple of weeks, students in the Child Development class will be experiencing what it’s like to be pregnant by wearing a fake baby bump for the day. This project provides many of the students an opportunity to prepare them for the challenges of being an adult and a parent.
The belly emulates a real pregnancy as accurate as it could be. When everything is strapped on it weighs about 25 pounds, making it difficult to walk and stand upright. The most similar physical symptom to a real pregnancy was the need to use the bathroom more, due to metal balls in a belt that place pressure on the bladder. The worst part was feeling like I was sweating the whole day, as the belly seemed to make the temperature increase no matter where I went.
In addition to physical symptoms, being “pregnant” also changed the way people acted. Most knew it was for the class, however it felt as though someone was always staring. Even if it was just a glance, I still felt uncomfortable and self-conscious.
Although the bellies can’t simulate many side effects of pregnancy, such as mood swings or nausea, it can help students realize what it can be like.
For those in the Child Development class, wearing the bellies helped them learn and experience a topic that is not discussed a lot. They were also able to ask questions and discuss what pregnancy is really like, giving them a skill that can be used later on in life making Child Development one of the few classes that offers a lesson beyond memorizing formulas or dates.