Welcome Song in Little Harbor
Why: Buoyancy, Balance and Socialization!
How: Gather in a circle and have parents lengthen their arms to support their student to create the Little Harbor position. This position allows student to explore the feelings of buoyancy and balance with support. Encourage parents to support as low in the water as possible so the student can learn to stabilize their position (parents may need to bend their knees slightly to achieve this). Parents and students are also free to splash their hands while singing along. This reminds the parents, infants and toddlers that the water is everywhere and helps to acclimate them to that sensation.
Song Lyrics: _______is here today __________is here today _________ let’s all splash the water __________ is here today!
Big Mat Conditioning and / or Submerging
Why: To practice Breath Control and for young infants, spending time in the prone position (on the stomach) can aid with achieving certain milestones such as rolling over, sitting up, and crawling! For older infants and toddlers sitting on the Big Mat can aid with balance and comfort!
How: Place the children on a large mat on their tummy or in a seated position facing the outside of the mat. Utilize a watering can or cup to sprinkle water over the body, head and face.
FOR MORE ADVANCED STUDENTS; count 1 – 2 – 3 after the song “fall” off the big mat and submerge!
Why: To gain comfort with Buoyancy and Balance on the front and back.
How: Instruct parents to support children on front and / or back with their feet against the wall. Count down 3 – 2 – 1 BLAST OFF! Encourage students to push-off the wall and glide or kick to the rope. Once there, students will flip to their front and / or back and glide or kick back to the wall. Placing a target alone the wall (such as a colored cone) can add extra incentive when kicking back ! Practice this skill for several rounds on the front and several more on the back!
FOR MORE ADVANCED STUDENTS; Encourage parents to allow children to hold on to the wall for a few seconds in between to develop grip strength. If blasting on the front, add in the submersion.
Belly Slide with Monkey Walk
*great for those that for those that cannot crawl or walk, but fun for anyone*
Why: Breath Control, Submerging and Fun!
How: Set up an obstacle course to keep the class moving. Begin by having students monkey walk to the belly slide. Encourage them to climb out and lie on their belly on the small mat. Allow parent to cue 1-2-3 and have them slide in.
FOR MORE ADVANCED STUDENTS; Encourage them to crawl down the mat to enter the water on their own and submerge!
Note; We DO allow infants to go down this slide head first as it is an natural way for a young infant to explore breath control!
Back Float Under the Big Mirror
Why: To practice buoyancy and balance on the back.
How: Assist parents with supporting their children on their backs in the cheek-to-cheek position. Have them travel backward under the big mirror for several rounds to help students relax on their backs. Sing the song a few times to get students to relax on their backs.
Fishes in the Ocean
Why: Breath Control and Safety.
How: Students climb out at the edge of the pool, sit on the edge with their feet in the water and with or without parent’s assistance sing the song and fall in on cue. FOR MORE ADVANCED STUDENTS; Encourage parents to submerge their child completely or to allow the to fall into the water independently and / or add the turn around by having parents position themselves at the side of their children and assist them with falling in on cue, submerging and turning to the wall.
Song Lyrics: Fishes in the ocean, Fishies in the Sea, we all fall in on 1-2-3!
Wheels on the Bus
Why: To end each class on a happy note!
How: Gather students and parents into a circle and pass out a small floating bus toy to each student. Ask the parents to match their actions to the lyrics of the song.
Song Lyrics: The wheels on the bus go round and round, round and round, round and round, the wheel on the bus go round and round all through the pool! Repeat with the following lyrics:
- Windows go up and down!
- Wipers go Swish, Swish, Swish!
- Doors go open and shut.
- Horn goes beep, beep beep.
- Babies Wave Bye Bye.