Since the day I found out I was pregnant, I have waited for this day: Doodle’s first trip to the aquarium. I love aquariums; they are my favorite. Growing up on the water, I have always been fascinated by marine life and its seemingly limitless eco- and biodiversity. Of course I want to share this excitement with my daughter, and today was the day! I beamed with pride as she pointed at all of the different fish, face smushed against the glass, taking it all in. She absolutely loved it and, about half way throughout the visit, I realized that I might have accidentally brainwashed her to love it.
I figure there are worse things I could encourage her to love than science. Below outlines the steps we unwittingly took in our journey to aquatic discovery. You too can brainwash your child to love aquariums in these five easy steps.
Step 1: Create an idyllic, “Under the Sea” themed nursery. Pro Tip: All this really requires is blue paint. (Age 0)
Step 2: Purchase and install Baby Einstein Sea Dreams Soother. It will lull both you and your baby to sleep. When old enough, they can easily turn it on themselves. The first time this happens in the middle of the night will scare the shit out of you. After that, every time you hear it you will thank God for putting Julie Aigner Clark on this earth. (Age 2-3 months)
Step 3: Someone gifts you and small fish tank for a birthday or holiday. If you can, try to convince that person to stop by as often as necessary to clean the tank. Repeat the phrase “Where are your fish?” as often as possible. Use fish tank in lieu of television. (Age 6-9 months)
Step 4: If screen-time rules are going to be violated, encourage nature documentaries. Planet Earth is good. Best Parkour of 2013 does not count. (Age 10+ months)
Step 5: Take a trip to the aquarium on a rainy day. Wait in the line, surrounded by screaming families that will make you second-guess every life choice you’ve made up until this moment. Watch with pride when all your preparation pays off and your kid is absolutely enamored with the exhibits. Visit the sharks twice. (Age 1 year).
Looking beyond your back yard? Check out the Travel Channel’s Best Aquariums in the US.