From our readings in the book, there has been a general trend of increased IQ every generation also know as the Flynn effect. This increase may also stem from the fact that there is also an increase in the amount of technology present in our every day lives that might have helped us become smarter. Today more students are taking more rigorous course and standardize test to get into elite schools than before. Some parents might do what-ever they can to give their child an edge; but how young is too young? You may have seen some infomercials about products that claims that your baby can learn to read or become smarter by purchasing there DVD and flashcard sets. However, before you do, you might want to do some research on the claims presented.
One very important principle from the six scientific principle of scientific thinking that should be considered in this case is "extraordinary claim." Although the company show testimonials of parents claiming that their baby can read, research show no evidence to back this up. One study show that "each hour per day of viewing baby DVDs/videos was associated with a 16.99-point decrement in CDI (Communicative Development Inventory) score" (Zimmerman, 2007). Consumers should also consider other explanations as well- ruling out rival hypothesis. The system eposes the child to the DVD's and drills them on flashcards which could actually cause the child to memorize the "images" of the word instead of reading the words themselves.
Further more, most IQ test for young children assess sensory abilities, thus has very little association with intelligence (Lilienfield, pg. 332). Additionally the reliability of an IQ is not reliable prior to age two. Genetics plays a role in "smartness" but environmental influences also affect these babies. I feel that if you really want your child to be smart you just can't take the easy way out and depend on a set of DVD's and flash cards to do that. Actively engaging, interacting and encouraging the baby might be a better solution.
Zimmerman F.J., Christakis D.A., Meltzoff A.N. Associations between Media Viewing and Language Development in Children Under Age 2 Years (2007) Journal of Pediatrics, 151 (4), pp. 364-368