I hold a Master’s degree in early childhood education and have worked in the field including teaching reading. The Your Baby Can Read program works because young children’s brains are developing so rapidly they can learn much of what we expose them too.
The BIG problem is that the material and methods used are not developmentally appropriate for preschool children and therefore could be HARMFUL to their development–mainly their eyesight and cognitive thinking skills.
Most of program involves things that research has shown if used too early in life can actually cause problems that show up in 4th-6th grade. Things such as vision problems, lack of concentration and comprehension, inadequate problem solving or reasoning skills, poor social skills and school burnout.
Spending time with the program also takes time away from the early learning experiences that any early childhood expert will tell you are far more important for lasting learning. It is better to spend time reading to preschool children, playing with them and providing hands-on experiences to provide a solid foundation for school and life. It has been proven that what makes children good readers is phonemic awareness not the ability to parrot or memorize, which is the lowest level cognitive skill.
Parents want to help their children be successful so, it is very important they be informed by unbiased experts in the field not, other parents or businesses trying to capitalize on new trends and parent desires. For the sake of your child’s future success in school, look into the research from early childhood experts who care about children.
Several books have been written on the subject including Raise a Smarter Child by Kindergarten by David Perlmutter, Start Smart: Building Brain Power in the Early Years by Pam Schiller, Einstein Never Used Flash Cards by Kathy Hirsh-Pasek & Roberta Golinkoff, Miseducation: Preschoolers at Risk by David Elkind, Your Child’s Growing Mind by Jane Healy and Mommy, Teach Me to Read by Barbara Curtis.