I am not a parent, but am often asked parenting questions and as an early childhood educator, I do my research, read up on childhood development and parenting best practices so I can inform the parents of my sprouts to the best of my ability.  I would like to offer some unsolicited advice to parents: Do not buy light up sneakers for your child.

To be clear, I’m a fun guy.  I’m a really fun teacher.  In my class, we sing, dance, use puppets, and generally spend most of the day learning through lots of play and laughter.  There isn’t much I don’t like in the classroom, but those light up shoes really irk me.

When I began teaching, it seemed like it was mostly just boys’ shoes.  They weren’t too bad, just on the bottom and it usually seemed like one or two lights.  These might even be helpful if caught in a sudden power outage.

Recently, they have become downright obnoxious.  They seem to be on more girls’ shoes than boys and the lights have moved from the sole of the shoe to the tops. Not enough to be in full view, the lights have multiplied. There seems to be about twenty small lights on the top of each shoe.

I’m not really sure what the purpose of these light up shoes is, but when worn to school, they simply provide a huge distraction for the child wearing them, the kids sitting anywhere near them, and the teacher who keeps thinking he’s wandered into a disco every time he looks up and sees flashes of light.

Our Quiet Minute, when most friends lay their heads down, I turn the lights off, and play some nice soothing music, has become erratic.  I have to remind friends to try and not move their feet too much as not to disturb other resting friends… or give me a seizure.

I am generally a positive person.  There isn’t much in this world I dislike, but much like the function of the appendix (the organ, not the supplemental part of a book), I can not find a useful purpose for these disco shoes.  I’m hopeful it’s just a fad that will pass soon.