Is This New Toy Is A Weapon In Parents’ Fight Against Childhood Obesity?

20% of kids’ playtime is spent using electronic devices.

The use of tablets and other devices by developing children is a hotly-contested aspect of parenting. Many feel that tablets are the books of the future, while others feel as though tossing another screen in front of a child retards their social as well as their intellectual development. Regardless of which side you fall on, you probably won’t argue that time in front of screen does, one way or another comes at the expense of physical activity.

Fisher-Price is hoping to buck that trend with its newest toy for toddlers, the Think and Learn Smart Cycle. Unveiled this week at the CES convention, at its essence, the toy is an exercise bike that serves as a Bluetooth controller for tablets, smartphones, and TVs. It won’t keep your kid from looking at a screen, but it will keep them physically engaged while they’re doing it thanks to four (as of release) built-in “games” that the kids can play by pedaling and steering the toy bike. The games are educational in nature, focusing on STEM, literacy, and social studies.


While it’s certainly a creative approach to the problems posed by modern parenting, undoubtedly many will find it as a half-measure that may ultimately do more harm than good by getting kids to connote screens with exercise. Skeptics are already weighing in on the product’s unveiling:

Further, the toy is certainly getting people talking, but it’s only revolutionary (or even successful) if kids actually want to use it, and this certainly seems like one of those toys that gets a couple hours of enthusiastic use, then starts gathering cobwebs in the corner. Consequently, this might be more of a toy for concerned parents than it is for their kids.


Some beauty pageants, like the Miss America competition, have done away with the swimsuit portions of the competitions, thus dipping their toes in the 21st century. Other aspects of beauty pageants remain stuck in the 1950s, and we're not even talking about the whole "judging women mostly on their looks" thing. One beauty pageant winner was disqualified for being a mom, as if you can't be beautiful after you've had a kid. Now she's trying to get the Miss World competition to update their rules.

Veronika Didusenko won the Miss Ukraine pageant in 2018. After four days, she was disqualified because pageant officials found out she was a mom to 5-year-old son Alex, and had been married. Didusenko said she had been aware of Miss World's rule barring mother from competing, but was encouraged to compete anyways by pageant organizers.

Keep Reading Show less

One mystery in our universe is a step closer to being solved. NASA's Parker Solar Probe launched last year to help scientists understand the sun. Now, it has returned its first findings. Four papers were published in the journal Nature detailing the findings of Parker's first two flybys. It's one small step for a solar probe, one giant leap for mankind.

It is astounding that we've advanced to the point where we've managed to build a probe capable of flying within 15 million miles from the surface of the sun, but here we are. Parker can withstand temperatures of up to 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit and travels at 430,000 miles per hour. It's the fastest human-made vehicle, and no other human-made object has been so close to the sun.

Keep Reading Show less
via Sportstreambest / Flickr

Since the mid '90s the phrase "God Forgives, Brothers Don't" has been part of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point's football team's lexicon.

Over the past few years, the team has taken the field flying a black skull-and-crossbones flag with an acronym for the phrase, "GFBD" on the skull's upper lip. Supporters of the team also use it on social media as #GFBD.

Keep Reading Show less