In this ongoing update, we’ll fill you in on the latest in gear, gadgets, and new ideas that can make caring for your baby safer, more efficient, or more fun.
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Dads-to-be feeling a bit unconnected from the baby in the womb? Designer Marco Righetto has come up with a perhaps-too-novel approach to the problem: a dress worn by the expecting mother that senses baby’s kicks, and a bracelet worn by the father that transmits that action in a way he feels immediately.
“Aura is a set of wearable devices for expecting parents,” he says, “a dress and a bracelet. It enables non-verbal communication between expecting parents. Fetal movement is translated into a light message for the mother-to-be, and a haptic one for her partner.”
It’s just a concept now, apparently. There’s more information here.
“Children learn more when they’re having fun,” LeapFrog says. The company’s toys “help your child learn about reading, writing, numbers, colors, matching, shapes and manners.”
“Read With Me Scout” is a “cuddly companion that provides the perfect interactive introduction to reading,” LeapFrog says. “The plush puppy pal” reads from 5 included books, and then asks questions to engage kids and deepen their comprehension. “This adorable introduction-to-reading experience is designed by our learning experts to inspire and entertain early readers everywhere.”
You can also switch the puppy into sleepy-time mode for relaxing stories, and 8 minutes of lullabies. It’s $24 here.
Scooping each mouthful of baby food out of bowl or jar can be tedious. This simple gadget can make feeding much simpler: just load the food into the handle, and then squirt out each individual mouthful directly into the spoon!
The Squirt Spoon dispenses baby food “one bite at a time,” maker Boon says, and it’s especially convenient for one-handed feeding, or when you’re on-the-go. There’s less mess made as well.
The Boon Squirt Silicone Baby Food Dispensing Spoon is dishwasher safe, and free of BPA, phthalate, and PVC. It’s $8 here.
Don’t think it will give your kid an English accent, but it should help them learn letters: the Little Gadget Letter Friend from Vtech uses English voices “dispatched from the UK.”
The 7-inch talk robot “is sure to get your little one excited about learning!” Vtech says. “He shakes, dances and responds to your child with funny voices and sound effects.”
The toy helps kids learn letters, phonics, words, objects, telling the time, and more. It’s $65 here.
It’s not yet available, but this could be a tool to watch for when it ships this Summer: Blue Maestro says its Pacifi is the world’s first smart pacifier that monitors a baby’s temperature and transmits the data to an app on a parent’s smartphone.
The app even time-stamps and plots the temperature data in a graph. You can also record when medications are administered, set up alerts and reminders, and share the data with care-givers and medical professionals.
Pacifi also features a built-in proximity sensor so you can monitor its location — and so be alerted when your child wanders off. In the app, just set the distance for the alarm to trigger.
The Pacifi transmits temperature data via the new “Low Energy” Bluetooth, so there’s no need to worry about radio frequencies close to your child’s head.
Combining safety for your baby and small children with ease of use for you, Clek says its Foonf convertible car seat helps to prevent injury to your child in the event of a collision.
The patented REACT (Rapid Energy-Absorbing Crumple Technology) safety system reduces impact forces by up to 40 percent. The seat has a steel sub-structure with energy-absorbing foam in the sides and headrest to protect in a side impact.
Also, the car seat is a slim 17-inches wide, so three can fit side-by-side if needed. And it’s even approved for use in aircraft.
The Foonf is $398 here.