One of my fears when my daughter was enrolled in swimming was the tears that may come with her learning. Luckily, we did not have any tears from her but from me instead.
Besides my inability to let go when I should, I have seen many children cry before their swim class and even during it. So I went to the experts at Aqua-Tots Swim School to see if they can offer tips to help parents in this type of situation.
I want to first state that crying when learning how to swim is very common and normal. So don’t feel like there is something wrong. When you have a great school like Aqua-Tots Swim School to help you along the way, in the end you both will feel much better.
There are some common reasons as to why children cry. Here are the four most common ones:
- It’s New – Swimming lessons are a new experience. There are new sights, sounds, textures, smells, faces, and interactions in the pool environment.
- Age – With time, your child will gain control over their emotions and learn to enjoy the water.
- Fear or Anger – Some children are genuinely fearful of the water and it takes time to help them overcome their fear. Other children can become angry and use tears to control the situation.
- Separation Anxiety – Your child may experience separation anxiety and feel anxious when away from familiar people and places.
Hearing your child cry is always hard (I know it is for me) and there are ways to help them when it comes to swimming lessons. Here are four tips to help.
- Be Positive and Keep Your Eyes on The Goal – As a parent, you can encourage your child with compliments and praise on what they do well in each lesson.
- Keep Cool – Being calm helps your child settle down faster.
- Practice At Home – Make it fun! Use the tub, shower, and pool to practice swimming skills (i.e. holding breath, water submersions, etc.)
- Be Consistent – Skipping or discounting swim lessons inhibits swimming progressions and will extend the time it takes to learn how to swim safely.
The layout at Aqua-Tots is great to help the child gain trust of the instructor as the parents can view the lesson through the viewing gallery which allows them to interact with their child. This way your child is aware that you are near and rooting for them. This space allows the instructor and the child build trust and a bond will form.
This is one of the many reasons why Aqua-Tots is amazing as they are there for you every step of the way. Their instructors care about your child and they are trained to:
- Identify the reason your child is crying so they can best alleviate the tears.
- Build trusting relationships with your child.
- Offer consistent routines and terminology in every lesson.
- Help your child build trust in the water.
Water is an adaptive environment and it takes time to adjust. The more frequently your child comes to lessons, the faster the crying will subside. The general rule of thumb is:
- 3+ lessons per week – crying subsides after 3-4 lessons
- 2 lessons per week – crying subsides after 5-6 lessons
- 1 lesson per week – crying subsides after 7-8 lessons
With these tips and with the guidance of the swimming school, you will be at tears to cheers in no time. Just remember that at Aqua-Tots Swim School they never leave your side to ensure that everyone is happy.
If you are interested in swim lessons, give Aqua-Tots Swim School a call at 905-848-2782. Also make sure to follow them on Facebook to see what’s new.
Until next time…Happy Parenting!
– Momma Braga
This article is brought to you in partnership with Aqua-Tots Swim School, Mississauga.
Recently I shared an article about our experience with swim lessons and Aqua-Tots Swim Schools. After a great interest from many of my loyal readers, we have decided to bring more information on this great swimming school and more information on swimming in general.
Today’s piece is an introduction to their weekday morning classes which run Mondays through Thursdays every week from 9am to 12:30 pm (with the exception of Fridays). These weekday morning swim lessons are great for maternity leave moms and dads, and other caregivers who take care of babies through the mornings as well as busy preschoolers.
Here are some highlights of the morning swim lessons available at Aqua-Tots which make mornings extraordinary.
Level 1 and Level 2
- Stage appropriate swim lessons starting at 4 months of age.
- Baby swim lessons are divided into 2 parent and tot classes: Level 1 Tadpoles (4 months to 12 months) and Level 2 Minnows (13 months to 30 months).
- Level 1 focuses on water adjustment and level 2 on creating boundaries in and around water for tots – both classes have an emphasis on water safety skills and build comfort in the water for babies but also help in instilling confidence in the caregivers and their ability to practice proper holds and other techniques that build a sense of security.
- These classes are a great opportunity to bond with your baby.
- It’s also a wonderful chance to meet and chat with other caregivers: there is complimentary coffee and a play area which can turn a swim lesson into a full morning experience.
- We also have change tables and encourage moms to come with strollers and car seats and “park” their items where ever is most convenient for them inside the facility.
- We understand that nap times and schedules change frequently in those early years, that’s why switching to a different morning class time is easy, and hassle free.
- In addition to the Level 1 and Level 2 classes that mainly take place throughout the weekday mornings, we also offer Level 3 – Leapfrogs classes on weekday mornings (2.5 and up) – This beginner class provides the foundation that helps children achieve comfort with basic swim skills.
- It’s ideal for moms, dads and caregivers taking care of preschoolers looking for a weekday morning activities that promotes mental and physical stimulation.
- This Level is the first time where young children go in the water independently with no caregiver, and have a chance to establish a trusting bond with a water safety instructor while a caregiver watches from the viewing gallery. This way you avoid the heat of the pool area but still get to watch your child’s progress during swim lessons.
- For families with multiples, our flexibility weekday morning schedule allows for second -time parents to go in the water with their babies into a Level 1 or Level 2 class while their eldest preschooler goes in the water for a Level 3 class simultaneously. It’s a great way for the whole family to stay active and learn new skills.
- We also have everything a parent or guardian of a young child would need for a morning swim lesson – swim diapers, cloth diapers, swim suits, goggles, and swim caps and a variety of snacks on sale for after swim class.
“We believe it’s more than just a swim lesson, it’s a morning experience.”
If you are interested in these swim lessons, give Aqua-Tots Swim Schools a call at 905-848-2782. Also make sure to follow them on Facebook to see what’s new.
Stay tuned for the next piece which is on turning tears into cheers!
Until next time…Happy Parenting!
– Momma Braga