How to prepare for your 1st swim class
New experiences help form children, yet new experiences can also prompt anxiety for all involved. We understand that your first Little Fishes swimming class—whether your baby is six months old or six years old—can be nerve-racking for both the parent and child. There are several things you can do at home to make that first Little Fishes Swim School class go smoothly for your child.
- Talk about it: Weeks and days leading up to the first swim class, talk to your child about what to expect. Even offer to take your child to the location you will be attending so they can become familiar with the environment.
- Be excited and positive:Children can sense how we are feeling and your child needs to know that you are confident they will be successful. Express how much fun they are going to have and what an important (and life-saving) skill they will be learning.
- Show (in addition to tell):Go online and show your child the LFSS website and Facebook page. Look at all the photos of our little fishes and peruse coach photos so that your child can become familiar with the place and the people.
- Smart Scheduling: Be sure to schedule a swim class for a time that coincides with a relaxed and content child. Lessons close to when your child eats lunch or naps may not be the best options.
The day of your child’s first class:
- Early Fish Gets the Worm: Arrive early so your child can meet the staff and his/her coach. Watch other lessons so the child knows what to expect.
- Bring a Friend: Bring a waterproof comfort toy for your child to take into the pool if you think that will help ease the transition.
- Be Animated: Offer encouraging smiles and gestures from the sidelines when your child looks for reassurance.
- Listen Carefully: Bring your listening ears so that you can familiarize yourself with the LFSS songs. Singing them at home will help your child recognize them and get excited about his/her next class.
- Say Cheese!: Photographing your child during his/her lesson will instill pride and confidence—and a desire to swim again.
Every little fish is different. Some jump right in during their first class and never look back; for others, it might take a few weeks to adjust. We encourage parents to be patient and to understand that each child acclimates to new situations differently. Our entire staff is here to support you as you and your family become part of ours!