Learning to stay afloat

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I never took swimming lessons as a child. My father threw me in the pool at age 7, while on a trip to Florida and taught me how to tread water, float and dive in. By the end of that trip, I was comfortably jumping in the water and swimming in the deep end. And while I wouldn’t categorize myself as the best swimmer, I am comfortable in the water and know the limits of what I can and cannot do.

When I had kids, I knew that I wanted them to learn the proper techniques of swimming, so they would be strong swimmers and not be afraid of the water. Swimming is a life skill, as far as I’m concerned.

I took my Little Mouse to mom and tot classes at our local community centre starting at four months old. She loved the water, loved splashing and jumping in. But something changed along the way and she was afraid. She didn’t want to jump in, or float and it took her a long time to put her face in.

We tried one-on-one classes, but we eventually put her back into a regular class, as I thought that seeing other kids do the required floats and jumps would help her. You know, a positive peer pressure never hurt anyone, right? It helped somewhat, but I learned something else about my daughter through this process, she is stubborn!

When she doesn’t want to do something, she doesn’t do it.

So here we are, about to start our fifth go at level Preschool 3. I do know that it is very common for many kids to do this level numerous times, in fact, from speaking to other parents that it’s more uncommon for kids to pass this first time around.

In-land, (ie. on our living room floor), she will do all the required floats, and even knows how to explain how to do them to her little sister, but in the water, she closes up. I wish I could make her feel more comfortable, help her to trust in her teacher more, understand that they are there to help her, but she has to get it on her own. She has to apply the knowledge she has in order to pass the class.

I wonder how many times that sentence will come up in the future?!

In the meantime, I will try to take her to the pool to practice more and try to help her feel more comfortable in the water. I can’t make her trust her teacher, but I can help her to try. I have faith that she will eventually pass this level. And with that, a different set of challenges will be upon us.

For now, I’ll take it one level at a time!

We’d both love a follow, as there are some great stories and tips to be read!


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