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!
Why: Breath Control
How: Instruct parents to hold their little one under the arms and facing each other. While they move in a circular pattern hold the noodle up against the jet to create a fountain for them to pass through. Train parents to walk slowly through the fountain and look for the natural reaction of the child when the water pours over their face. After a few cycles you should notice that the student is prepared and simply closes their eyes and mouth when under the water. Water washing from the back of the head to the front is always less intimidating.
FOR MORE ADVANCED STUDENTS; Allow students to monkey walk to the noodle fountain and then encourage parents assist the student with submerging while moving under the fountain. During the initial introduction of learning breath control, submersion’s of young children must be brief (approximately three seconds) and few in number (no more than six per lesson). Once the child can consistently initiate the submersion’s AND can demonstrate competent breath control, submersion’s can become longer and more frequent.
Swim To Steps/Dock
Why: Breath Control and Submerging.
How: Line up parents and children facing the steps and/or dock. Using the 1-2-3 up and under cue parents to “swim” their children to the steps and assist them with getting back up to their feet. Repeat this activity a few times.
For More Advanced Students; Encourage parents to release their hold when swimming to the steps and standing back up. Students jump indepemdently off the steps and swim back to parents.
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.
Why: Breath Control, Submerging and Safety
How: The technique in which you roll over a student generally depends on age, size and comfort level. These videos show two different techniques with different endings. Choose the skill that is most comfortable for your parents/students but don’t be afraid to introduce something new! Follow the same cue of 1, 2, 3 lift up then submerge.
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.