It’s the age old question. “When should I start my child on swimming lessons? ”
The right answer is SOONER THAN AFTERWARDS!!
Many families wait until their children enter kindergarten or 1st grade before getting their children into a swimming program that will teach water safety, drown-proofing and actual swimming expertise. Parents, DO NOT WAIT!
Here are some statistics from the Center regarding Disease Control.
* in 2003, 782 children in between age 0 and 14 drowned (CDC, 2003)
1. drowning in the second leading cause of injury related dying for children ages 1 – 14 (AFTER motor vehicle crashes) (CDC, 2003)
* drowning rates are highest for the kids under 5 years of age (CDC, 2003)
The stark the fact is that drowning can result in a serious injury or death for children but that it can be STOPPED!! Being diligent in enrolling our children in quality swimming lessons agency can be the first step in making that happen.
Starting swimming lessons between time 3 and 3 ½ is an appropriate time for most kids. You as the parent know your child better than anyone else therefore only you are qualified to decide when is the best time for your child.
You can find “Parent & Tot” classes available at many pools nevertheless the focus of those classes is teaching your child to be cozy in the water and giving parents more confidence within the water with their child not so much to teach them how to frolic in the water. They are a great way to introduce your child to the world of water.
At age a few many children are involved in preschool or other activities where they will leave you and go with another adult. At this age they also are usually starting to interact with other children in a classroom environment in a appropriate way. Having a handle on these 2 concerns should be a good indicator that your child is ready to be in any swimming class on their own.
Do your research before deciding what plan will best suit the needs of your family.
There are so many programs presented across the country. Some are nationally known programs and others are privately owned programs. Both are great options as long as you do your homework. Either way you will want to find out about a few things.
1 . How old do little ones have to be to register in the program?
2 . Are the children signed up based on age and/or ability level?
3. What is the educator to student ratio? For preschoolers a great ratio is definitely 1: 4.
4. What kind of certification and experience does the instructor have? Just because the teacher is a great swimmer in the area does not mean that person will automatically be a great teacher. Qualification and experience count for a lot in adult occupations so look for the same in the swimming program that you make use of.
5. Will the same instructor be teaching all the lessons in the session? Children thrive on consistency so you would want to make sure that you will see the same instructor at each class.
6. Do they teach a specific swimming program and are there progress studies so that you can track your child’s progress? Knowing where your child can be excelling and where there is still work to be done is very important in swimming just as it would be in school. It will also give you a thought of what you can expect your child to accomplish in the course of a session set.
7. Is there an opportunity for a make up lesson when you have to miss for something like sickness?
8. Are there programs designed for children who have special needs?
The more information that you have regarding the various swimming lesson programs in your area the better decision you can make for your child. Swimming is a vital skill for all small children and the best experience will be a prepared experience.