Thursday, July 9, 2015

How To Teach a Toddler to Swim!

welcome summer 2015 and associated heatwave discomfort!
some pics below of our swimming session with Max, and some tips we are finding helpful for age appropriate 'lessons,' check it out!
  • let the toddler get comfortable, at their own pace. it really helps if there is a wading area leading into depth or even stairs to maneuver. let them get their feet wet, cool down their body temp and relax their nerves. water can be pretty scary! please don't throw your child in the water in an attempt to teach through trauma surviving the plunge!

^^ shallow end to...^^

^^ smiling at chest deep!! ^^

  • be an example of how the body can safely move in water, how buoyant the body can be when relaxed! make those splashes fun and huge, kids love how it looks and want to naturally imitate

^^ but be careful, kids also can't stand getting splashed in the face! hey dad, watch where you're going!! ^^

  • patience, patience, patience! practice, practice, practice!

  • and when it's time to stop and take a break, listen. there will be plenty of other opportunities in the summer to work on getting the basics down

  • add some fun and games to the lessons! who knew that this bannister was the perfect height for a pretend fireman sliding down a fire pole?!

  • an unpressured child will want to return to the waters over and over again '(vs. a traumatized child who will want nothing to do with the water- even worse, for the rest of the summer!). swimming is a survival skill!

in the end, Max is nowhere near knowing how to swim. my husband though is a fantastic and patient teacher and i love how he's able to build a foundation for Max to not only be comfortable in the water but wanting to go to the water. maybe he'll be able to dunk his head in the water by the end of 2015? or hey maybe even jump into our arms from the deck? whatever the turnout will be, we had fun (and cooled off) in the process.

happy summer to you!


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