She's turned the waiting room into a playground of video games, a sliding board and play set, a talking parrot, cotton clouds, TV sets and a floor filled with dancing lights.
Youngsters can do as they wish. They can sit and read, watch television or play with anything in sight. Most start out with the parrot, Kiddo. Kiddo, whose name stands for "kids in a dynamite dental office," is always ready for a word or two and a lot of green-feather preening in front of admirers.
Then an inner door opens the way to new vistas.
Hallways are full of tubes of flashing lights, cartoon cutouts, a 4-foot- long toothbrush with 4-inch bristles, an even larger yellow Ticonderoga pencil, and a full-dress, life-size, full-color model of Brushie, a few feet away from a 3-foot-high, stuffed molar.
And then there are the eight examination and treatment rooms, each designed on a theme:
The walls of the Dinosaur Room, rampant with brontosaurus, triceratops and stegosaurus, feature a basketball game between the "Brushasaurus" and the ''DeCayasaurus" teams.
Competitors in appropriately lettered tank tops and tennis shoes gallop toward each other, flanked by Dr. J. Csauras and cheerleaders. The scoreboard reads Brushasaurus 32, DeCayasaurus 0.
The Jungle Room next door features animal masks - tiger, baboon, lion, antelope - along the wall with cloth tiger skins, the thatched roof of a hut and tall trees surrounding them. Bird calls, growls and screeches typical of a deep jungle setting resound.
The Glitz & Glitter Room sparkles with sequin-decorated geometric shapes. The Music Room is filled with records and other symbols of the trade. The decor in Brushie's Room includes a full-size traffic light blinking through the standard colors, a Popeye mirror and a roosting place for Bippy the Hippy, her favorite hand puppet.
The Space Room, where full head X-rays are made, is papered with wall-size photos of moonscapes and a space shuttle on the runway. Overhead is a view of space and the planets of the solar system in mobile form revolving around each other.
The Penguin Room adjoins the spot where youngsters get their pictures taken with Brushie. Its decor is typical of office wall treatment. Featuring snowscapes, the room is filled with figures of penguins - penguins skiing, penguins in sequins, penguins dancing. Huge Styrofoam snowflakes dangle from the ceiling.
A penguin menu on the wall lists Appetizer - herring. Entree - sardines or squid. Dessert - fish cakes.
Eight dental assistants, Brushie and Irving Jacobson, a specialist in pedodontics, work with youngsters in the highly imaginative settings, moving in coordinated patterns from room to room, as they are needed, never leaving the youngsters unattended and maintaining a constant flow of reassuring chatter as they work.
Between the decor and the "clowning," Jacobson's office appears to be unique, according to Teresa Ravert, executive director of the Philadelphia County Dental Society in Center City.
"I don't know of anything like it," she said, as did specialists in the field of dentistry for children and adolescents.
The grand design was set in motion three years ago after Jodi, now 30, and the doctor, now 46, married and set up housekeeping in Feasterville. A short time later, the dentist found himself understaffed as his chief dental assistant left to marry.
The new Mrs. Jacobson launched an immediate campaign, insisting, "I can do it! I can do it!" Eventually, she wore down her husband's resistance, she said, and got the job. That's the way she learned the business.
One of the first things she did in her new role was to watch a school appearance by her husband as he tried to give students the rudiments of oral hygiene and sought to persuade them to visit their family dentists.
After the presentation, she spoke her mind.
"Irv, I was bored stiff. The kids were bored stiff. That was terrible. We've got to do something."
Jacobson accepted the criticism as well-intentioned and called for suggestions. That's how Brushie was born.
But it wasn't a simple matter of pulling a clown out of a hat. Jodi, on her way to becoming Brushie, had to sit down and work it out, harking back to her childhood in Cherry Hill, the times when clowns and cartoons competed for ratings in the world of children's television.
Her recollections of the television clowns and the circus clowns of her formative years were blended with the shopping center clowns and the backyard birthday clowns to become the generic clown that serves as Jacobson's ever- faithful foil.
Brushie and Jacobson, who now appear two to three times a week in Philadelphia-area schools in half-magic, half-comedy shows, are booked up through the end of 1990. The only available days left are Christmas vacation and other holidays.
Jodi appears at other events as Brushie, entertaining at about 75 benefits, birthdays and face-painting parties each year. And then there's the time Jodi spends in the office at 1916 Welsh Rd., using Brushie's voice and borrowing some of Brushie's patter in her work with the patients.
In addition to their appearances, the Jacobsons open their offices to school tours two to three times a week. Students come to look at the dental equipment and the rooms to get a firsthand view of how dental care is offered. It's the other side of the school visit and another chance to see Brushie the Clown.
Jodi came by her role as a clown quite honestly. She's not a frustrated drama student, she never yearned for the spotlight and she never developed the do-or-die, unbounded enthusiasm of the cheerleading corps.
"Couldn't," she said. "I was too fat as a youngster to be a cheerleader."
Her first experience as a role-player came as a businesswoman in Kensington, where she operated a gift shop for children. Because of demand, she soon found herself entertaining at parties and delivering Balloongrams, sometimes in clown, gorilla or bunny costumes.
The clown outfit seemed to work best. So she stayed with it.
"The shop was my dream. Working here as Brushie is a logical extension of my dream," she said.
Her husband nodded in understanding. Jacobson, a graduate of Lafayette University and the University of Pennsylvania, where he earned his dental degree, also did graduate work in his specialty at Boston University. Along the way, he had to relearn the world of the child.
"What we do," he said, "is talk to the youngsters, tell them what we're doing and why we're doing it, using words and terms that they can handle, words that are reassuring. Never words that sound threatening, words like hurt."
Discussing life as it is lived in a dental office, Jodi used a Brushie voice last week to explain to a tearful patient who had just had Novocain, ''Hey, nobody cries in here. Let's see," she said, checking the girl's gum. "You'll begin feeling numb there in just a minute and then you're going to get a pretty new silver tooth.
"You'll like it. The more you brush it, the shinier it will get. And the shinier it is, the more valuable it is. Someday, when your big teeth grow in, it will fall out and you can save it. Did you know that? I saved all of my teeth. I have them at home.
"Let's see how many teeth you've got. Let me count. Hey, you've still got 15 (permanent) teeth to come. Boy, when you lose them, that's going to be a lot of money from the tooth fairy."
Tears gone, the girl and Jodi-Brushie chattered on about teeth and good times and fun.
Every patient who enters the office begins the visit with Jodi or Brushie.
Conjuring up whichever personality is needed, she follows a set plan.
"On their first visit, I try to dazzle them with my footwork, to move so fast that I fill the air with words. Make them watch me and talk to me instead of worrying about where they are and why they are there. I want to make sure that their first visit is a good experience. There's nothing but an examination.
"Then Dr. Jacobson comes in for a visit. It's a fun time. There are no procedures. That's for the next visit."
When the time comes for dental care, things move slowly, she said. Never rushed, always friendly and warm, everyone talks about what's being done and why. Every effort is made to ensure that the patient is never hurt; "the word doesn't exist," she said.
The Jacobsons have found that parents who remain in the room may react, wince, grimace, talk about agony and pain while they watch the work on the children.
"Sometimes," Jacobson said, "the parents have to go. The patients are having difficulty only because Mom (or Dad) is there."
Jacobson is unswerving in his stance on always telling youngsters the truth.
"You must talk to them without lying. But talk positively, don't use frightening words," he said. "Go for the positive, tell them what we're doing for them. And always be gentle, very gentle."
His goal is to enroll every youngster in an examination-treatment program. Ideally, he and other dentists would like to see every youngster by the time they're 30 months old, or whenever they suffer some injury to the mouth.
"Everything that affects the baby teeth affects the permanent teeth," he said. "Too often we see them too late."
But early or late, they all get the treatment.
As she worked with 3- and 4-year-old brothers last week, Jodi was both the antic tomboy clown and the warm, friendly young woman.
"Im going to tickle your teeth," she told the older brother. "Here, let me touch your hand," she said, touching it with the spinning polishing pad used in cleaning teeth. He giggled and jumped, then settled down and let her polish.
When she finished, she announced to the younger brother, "It's your turn to be tickled."
He climbed into the chair and held out his hand for a trial tickle. He, too, giggled and had his teeth cleaned.
"All right, let's rinse and spit out," she said to the brothers. When nobody moved, she inaugurated a spitting contest. Both brothers competed immediately.
When the mother showed up to reclaim the boys, the younger boy left with her. The older brother stayed to play in the office.
"Somebody always stays," one of the assistants said. "There's so much to play with."
Some youngsters are hard to corral and take home. For those, Brushie records weekly messages on a special phone number, 676-7782. According to parents, some of her young fans refuse to go to bed until they hear it.
One of her latest goes:
"Hi, there. This is Brushie. I'm so glad you called. . . . One of Brushie's favorite snacks is popcorn. Popcorn is good for your teeth. Brushie doesn't eat candy or chew gum because they have sugar in them and sugar can cause cavities."
Then, after a rousing chorus of "Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush," she plunges into her theme song, done to the tune of the Chiquita Banana commercial. Her theme concludes with:
"You've got to brush your teeth every night and day, 'cause if you don't they'll fall out on the floor and you won't have them to chew anymore."
The lyrics may not scan, she agreed, but it does make a point.