Helping Any Parent Become a ‘Brain Builder’: Save the Children and Vroom

Direct and regular parental or caregiver interaction with children is central to many areas of development. A new partnership between Save the Children and Vroom helps show actionable ways – and provide simple tips – to help parents make even more of their time with their children.

Save the Children runs its Early Steps to School Success program, which “lays a critical foundation of language and literacy skills for children from birth to age 5, so they can enter school ready to succeed.”

“Through home visits, book exchanges, parenting groups, and an emphasis on transition to school, Early Steps staff helps children with language, social and emotional development, and equips parents and caregivers with the skills to successfully support children’s growth.”

The site notes some remarkable and troubling statistics:

  • “All children are born ready to learn, but for 15 million childrenliving in poverty in America, they enter school unready to succeed.”
  • “Before even walking through the classroom door, American children living in poverty have already fallen behind in school. By age 4, children from low-income families are up to 18 months behind their peers developmentally.”
  • “A child’s brain is already 80% formed by age 3; 90% by age 5.But children in poverty are less likely to attend preschool and often live in households where early learning activities are few and far between.”

New Partnership: Save the Children and Vroom

Recently, Save the Children teamed up with Vroom “to help turn shared moments into brain building ones. Whether it’s mealtime or bath time, or anytime in between, there are many ways to nurture a child’s growing mind.”

One of Early Steps Coordinators describes how it works for her: “All of the parents I work with love Vroom. The five principles – look, chat, follow, stretch, take turns – that Vroom teaches parents helps them understand the science behind their child’s learning. When I visit, parents are always eager to get a new Vroom learning card, and those who have smart phones are so proud to show me the progress they’ve made on the Vroom app.”

Save the Children offers a brief case study of Kristy, from Alpaugh, CA, who has two sons, 18-month-old Preston and Parker, 11: “She’s been using Vroom with Preston since he was born and tries to do a Vroom activity every single day, whether it’s identifying colors while folding laundry or counting dishes as they clean up after meals. Kristy even submitted her own Vroom activity on the app.”

Said Kristy: “Vroom helps me really understand child development. I’m so glad I can help him in his learning. I grew up in foster care, so when I became a parent, I wasn’t sure of what to do. I am so grateful for the gift of Vroom because it has helped my family tremendously. I wish that it was around when Parker was Preston’s age.”

Among the other areas where the Vroom-Save the Children partnership is taking hold: Navajo Nation, AZ; Calhoun County, WV; Blackville, SC; Sand Gap, KY; and more.

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