As I’ve written about before, Cora is presently in love with the movie Cars. And from the first time she watched it, about two months ago, the collection of Hotwheels and Matchbox cars she’s inherited from her Dad and brother has been her greatest plaything. She oragnizes them by color and occupation. Race cars to the left, construction trucks to the right, please. She drives them on the edge of the bathtub and parks them between the keys of the piano. Together we have drawn cities for them to drive through and made buildings out of cardboard boxes for them to live in. (More on those later, perhaps.)
This is the second fixation Cora has had with a movie. Toy Story was first and it had me worrying a bit. What could watching the same movie again and again be doing to her little brain, I wondered. Then, I remembered that our music teacher touted repetition as an important part of toddlers’ cognitive development as it related to music. Could film work the same way? Like reading the same book over and over again, which I am also known to do upon request.
Articles like this one from a child psychologist on an Australian parenting forum, also helped me recognize that these fixations, rather than obsessions, are innocent and may even be beneficial to some degree. If every moment of every day were filled with cars, if she wouldn’t ever watch anything else, if she couldn’t play any other games or with any other toys – then we’d have a problem.
And so, we’re off to listen to the Cars soundtrack while playing with cars, in the car.