From our end, we take things seriously. We work hard to maximize the time your child is in class with us by teaching engaging and fun lessons that build your children’s swimming skills. Our instructors are trained and prepare for each lesson by writing a lesson plan. However, parents also play a big role in what the swim lesson experience will be like for their kids.
Here are six things you can do to give your child a positive swim experience this summer:
1. Arrive early. Let’s face it, getting a child pool-ready can be stressful: sunscreen, goggles, and fielding last-minute “Mom, I’m hungry” declarations. Plan to arrive a few minutes early each day in order to alleviate that aforementioned stress. Your child will begin each class in a more relaxed mood because of it.
2. Talk before and after. Before each class, encourage your child to do their best during the class. If it will be their first lesson, tell them that you understand that they might be nervous, but that their instructor will be there to make them feel comfortable and you will be nearby, watching. After each class, hug and tell your child what they did well. If it was a difficult lesson, try to find one positive thing to point out. But during the class…
3.Trust the instructor to do their job. We highly value your feedback and concerns, but with that being said, we train and prepare our instructors to do the best job they can in teaching your kids. During your child’s lesson, offering intermittent praise or encouragement in the form of, “Great kicking, John!” or “Excellent rainbow arms, Jane!” is fine, but correcting your child’s technique from the edge of the pool or constantly reminding them to adjust their goggles interferes with the class and undermines the instructor’s authority.
4. Watch the lesson. Your child will be learning and practicing new skills daily, and will likely want you to see. It might be tempting to scroll social media, read, or catch up on work while your child swims, but try to stay visually engaged in their lesson. This will ensure that you have something specific to congratulate your kids on after each class.
5. Set expectations. Timid children or beginning swimmers might feel overwhelmed when starting lessons. Keep encouraging your child to try, and go over what you expect of them during class by saying things like “It’s okay for you to feel scared in class but you cannot be disrespectful to your teacher” or “I understand that jumping into the water scares you but I want you to attempt it when your teacher says it’s time.”
6. When lessons are over, debrief. Ask your child what they enjoyed about swim lessons and what they are looking forward to practicing in the pool now (bonus points if you do this over ice cream or sno-cones!). Tell them you are proud of them for their hard work in swim lessons and talk about some of their favorite moments from the lessons.
7. Practice. For younger students, or students who are afraid of the water, read our Guide to Bath Time Swim Lesson Prep. For older students, you can teach them a lot yourself! Watch our 4 Instagram videos on the Top 10 DO NOTS for Teaching Your Child to Swim.
As always, let us know if you have any questions or concerns! We look forward to teaching you this summer.