Sign up for our Newsletter

75 F
Tampa
Tuesday, September 27, 2022

Stay Connected

  • GuideWell

Sign up for our Newsletter

Scooping Up Knowledge with the YMCA’s Little Learners Program

For 132 years, the Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA has worked to create a healthier Tampa community, help kids and families and engage community members to work together to create a better tomorrow.

The Y provides a place for people—regardless  of age, income or background—to be healthier, more confident, connected and secure.

From quality out-of-school programming to life-saving swim lessons, values-based youth sports and engaging healthy activities for the entire family, our programs and initiatives develop a healthy spirit, mind and body for all.

Many parents are likely aware of our fitness and youth sports programs. However, many may now know that we offer programs for children as young as 2 years old!

The Little Learners program is generously funded by the Conn Memorial Foundation and provides children ages 2-5 with activities to enhance emotional, social and motor skills. The Little Learners program helps children engage in structured activities to help prepare them for kindergarten.

Grismeldy Rodriguez and her partner Albert Arevalo enrolled their sons in this program to socialize with other kids their age.

Abel and his identical twin brother Adiel were in a class with 10 other Little Learners. Rodriguez had fears going into the program: “We were worried the boys weren’t ready to be in a social setting with other children and considered pulling them out of the program, but Erica (the Program Director) assured us the boys were benefitting from it.” During the six-week class, the Arevalo boys had a steady yet robust social learning process.

Erica Brundidge is the Early Childhood Engagement Director at the Spurlino Family YMCA. She and her team work hand-in-hand to provide children with fun, developmentally appropriate educational activities.

“For many families, the Little Learners program is their child’s first experience in an early childhood education setting,” Brundidge says. “One of the primary reasons families enroll in the program is to provide their child with an opportunity to learn and socialize. On the last day of class, I was able to share a milestone I observed earlier in the day. One of the boys initiated play with a classmate, something he couldn’t do at the beginning of the six weeks. When I witness that type of growth, I know the mission of the Little Learners program is being fulfilled.”

Programs like Little Learners prepare our youngest community members for a bright future.

In 2021, through the support of donors and community members, the Tampa YMCA provided 26,349 children with education support through early learning, after-school care and summer camp programs.

Rodriguez and Arevalo are proud of their sons’ accomplishments and experience as YMCA members.

You, too, can become one of our fulfilled Y families today when you join now and register your child of any age for one of our programs!


*Presented by the YMCA | Originally published in September 2022 issue of Tampa Bay Parenting Magazine.

Related stories we think you’ll LOVE:

Hannah Geaumonthttps://www.tampaymca.org/
Hannah Geaumont is the Communications & Social Media Manager for the Tampa Metropolitan Area YMCA and YMCA of the Suncoast. After graduating from The University of Tampa with a degree in Advertising and Public Relations, Hannah began her career in the non-profit sector. She is passionate about her work in the Tampa community and is a member of the Junior League of Tampa and a Big Sister with Big Brothers Big Sisters. Hannah enjoys spending time with her family, boyfriend, and gardening in her spare time.

Related Articles

Program Profiles: Tampa Bay Education Guide Special Feature

From state-of-the-art technology to old-fashioned Socratic sessions by a lakeside, there's a school, a method and an academic home for your children in Tampa Bay. Check out some of these exciting and enriching programs from local schools.

Six Reasons to Be Excited About the Artemis Program

To the moon, Mars, and beyond! The historic launch of the Artemis program will eventually put humans back on the moon and...

Ask the Doctor: Raising awareness about alopecia

September is Alopecia Awareness month. Many women struggle with alopecia, but don’t often talk about it, since many don’t know much about alopecia. Stephani Shepherd...