Yakima Pediatrics, WCAAP, and Vroom Promote Brain Development Tools

Mary Virginia Maxwell, M.Ed, LMHC
Yakima Pediatrics

Yakima Pediatrics, a pediatric clinic associated with Community Health of Central Washington, and Educational Service District 105 are collaborating to offer a virtual one-hour Lunch and Learn All About Vroom at 12:00PM on June 17, 2020. We will be sharing the power of Vroom with our early learning educators. As an integrated behavioral health provider at Yakima Pediatrics I have delighted in the opportunity to offer concrete ways for care givers to strengthen their bond with their child using the basics of Vroom- Look, Follow, Chat, Take Turns and Stretch. I was also so happy to introduce Vroom to our amazing educator teams in our early learning centers.

During January and February 2020, our Yakima Headstart and Seedling centers scheduled four family engagement nights to introduce Vroom to educators and parents. At these family events we enjoyed a meal and a brief introduction to Vroom. These evening meetings were offered in Spanish and English and over 75 parents and educators attended.

From those events educators shared they were eager to learn more about brain building moments and to see how the activities designed by Vroom could be integrated into their classrooms.

And now during this unique time of sheltering place I believe the Vroom app is a simple tool to support busy, stressed and isolated care givers. Recently, care givers have told me it reminds them to provide focused attention in creative ways with their child (that they don’t have to think up) and gives them a mini break from the daily grind of living in quarantine.  Care givers relate that they feel pride in their growing ability to attune and teach and this has increased moments of connection and shared delight. I think we can all agree how much those moments are needed right now.

The virtual Lunch and Learn will offer early learning center staff and child care providers the time to learn more about how Vroom activities support brain development. Educators tell me they view Vroom as another strengths-based tool to engage and support families and they look forward to exploring the activities to adapt to their classroom. We are all so grateful for the partnerships between our medical community, the ESD105 and our early learning communities! We are inspired to keep building opportunities to notice, praise and encourage joy and delight when interacting with children and families.