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To expect swimming lessons to be successful after 3 terms

(42 Posts)
squilly Mon 14-Jul-08 20:40:00

My dd is 7 and has been attending swimming lessons all this school year. She's gone from being afraid to put her head under the water to confidently floating on her tummy and making the appropriate ball, star, pencil shapes, coming up for air inbetween (and sometimes spending 2 minutes sweeping the hair out of her face). It's fair to say, she's not a natural in the water.

Buf ffs, if she was, I wouldn't have to spend money on swimming lessons for her. That's the point isn't it? That they teach her to swim?

I sit in the pool area every week and listen to the instructor yelling out the names of other kids in the class, instructing them on what they should be doing, but my dd is quiet, does as she's told and gets her head down, so doesn't often get mentioned, even. a cost of £75 a term, x3 terms, with the same instructor, am I being unreasonable to expect dd to come out of her classes being able to swim?

Quattrocento Mon 14-Jul-08 20:43:06

Yanbu - sounds like the wrong swimming school tbh. Have you thought of one of those crash courses - a week of an hour a day during a half term - bit of a logistical mare to organise - but well worth it - everyone I know who's done one has come out swimming

KateF Mon 14-Jul-08 20:44:36

dd1 spent 7 terms in level 1 grin. I had run out of encouragement then something clicked and 5 terms later she's just gone into Level 6. Just bite your tongue and have patience....

dinny Mon 14-Jul-08 20:45:06

YABU - did she start lessons 3 terms ago? I'd say that's fair progress

can she wear a swim hat so she can avoid hair plastered on face scenario?

LIZS Mon 14-Jul-08 20:45:29

of course you are . She has made progress, is clearly now water confident, it really isn't something they can do before they are ready. dd took 4 terms , swimming twice a week before she progressed a class, a year on she has gone up two further classes. You may find she would benefit form an intensive course over a week or two or one to one to get her into the next stage and on to what you recognise as swimming.

dinny Mon 14-Jul-08 20:45:29

it's like when they learn to read - they just click at some point

LIZS Mon 14-Jul-08 20:49:07

{hijack alert} hi dinny , what day are you next term , we're still Tues

Orinoco Mon 14-Jul-08 20:52:15

Message withdrawn

theexmrsfederer Mon 14-Jul-08 20:53:07

With my two dc I must have sat through the equivalent of a lifetimes swimming lessons sad

It won't happen until they are ready. Some are ready sooner than others. My son has only just "got it" at the age of 8 and I really believe that even if Duncan Goodhew had personally coached him it wouldn't have made any difference!

dinny Mon 14-Jul-08 20:56:27

hey, LIZS, had to move to Thurs as ballet now Monday after school <<gah>>

andyrobo237 Mon 14-Jul-08 21:04:14

DD has had swimming lessons for a year now - she progressed well through the badges upto level 4 and it has been months since she got a badge, but she is enjoying it, and I will not stop until she can swim confidently in deep water. Having said that, our lessons are £33 for 10 sessions, which is reasonable!

Sometimes they need a diferent instructor, but I was told by an Australian friend who works at a Uni specialising with Sports, and she said that they dont 'get it' until they are over 7, and it doesnt matter whether they started at age 3 or age 6, they all get to the same level around the age of 8.

Perhaps look into an inensive course, or find somewhere else that does lessons. Have you spoken to the instructor about the progress at all??

squilly Mon 14-Jul-08 22:25:07

I did wander if I was being U. It was just that she started putting her head under the water/floating on her tummy, etc, last term. This term she was marked down on some things that last term she was marked as o.k. on. It jsut feels wrong.

It's that time of the month though and I just got cheesed off with the thought of another solid block of Monday nights spent in the blardy swimming baths with dd hardly being told anything other than 'nose to the floor' 'ball star pencil'. GOD I could scream just at the thought of it!

No doubt 6 weeks off will help...and the pmt might wear off a bit too.

They have just introduced crash courses at the pool, which makes me a little dubious about the effort (or lack of it) they've put in recently. They want £50 for a fortnights course. 3/4 hour every day. I could do without the expenditure, but it might make more sense than spending £75 in September for another 13 weeks of Mondays!

Thanks everyone for your advice.

FAQ Mon 14-Jul-08 22:27:39

I had YEARS of swimming lessons (first lessons around 4/5yrs old - last attempt at around 15), private, indvidiual, free, you name it I had them - and can still only managed a semi-decent back stroke and doggy paddle blush

SSSandy2 Mon 14-Jul-08 22:44:13

mine took a long longer than that and I had to pay heaps more for it (being a different set-up here). I don't even want to know how much I spent on it in the end. I think it was the wrong teacher/form of instruction for her.

I sent her to a holiday course (every day for a week) and she learnt heaps. I think the fact she was doing it every day made the difference to her

nkf Mon 14-Jul-08 22:53:52

If she's not a natural she will take longer. One way to speed up the progress is to take her in between (if you can bear it). Also is she actually making an effot? They do have to work at it. One to one lessons are great for pushing them ahead.

Tinker Mon 14-Jul-08 23:01:03

I had loads of swimming lessons as a child but still can't swim.

squilly Tue 15-Jul-08 11:27:50

Hi nfk

My dd is making an effort. She's one of these kids that really tries hard at things as she hates failure. She's also a bit of an authority pleaser, if you know what I mean. If I say, put some more effort in, she'd probably shrug and say 'I'm tired'. If a teacher said it, she'd push herself til she really flagged. So I don't think it's an effort thing. When the coach prompts her you can see her 'up her game'. There's just not much coaching going on with these sessions tbh.

I don't swim much and her dad, who does, is so busy at the moment, I can scarcely get him to eat his meals with us, let alone take the child swimming!

Summer holidays are here and I'm still toying with the intensive course idea. The only problem is it's a big commitment for a kid of 7 and I had rather hoped that this summer holidays could be a free time for her. No organised lessons, just a kick back time and a chance to get back to nature a bit...just being a kid for a change. I'll see if she fancies the idea and we'll take it from there.

We bought a tent this year, so that's one of the things I'd like to do with her instead. Maybe I'll just have to pick places with or near swimming pools.

nkf Tue 15-Jul-08 11:35:25

They don't sound like good lessons to me. How many in the class? And is the coach in the water with them?

I know some people swear by those intensive lessons and I'm sure they can work. I've never been too keen. I don't think learning to swim works in a way that suits crash courses.

brightwell Tue 15-Jul-08 12:00:52

If I could have my time again I would not use group swimming lessons for my dc. I would have private 1:1 or 1:2 lessons. My dd then aged 6 wasn't improving in her lessons. She had 2 private lessons and was off in the big pool able to swim a length having struggled to swim a width of the little pool. I know they're expensive but probably cheaper than paying for years of lessons. I daren't add up what I've paid out. 7 years of swimming lessons, our leisure centre do 4 terms of swimming a year.

PuppyMonkey Tue 15-Jul-08 12:02:58

I too had years and years of lessons. Still can't swim blush

FAQ Tue 15-Jul-08 12:05:05

so glad I'm not the only one that just about every swimming lesson available to me whille at school - but still can't really swim. And that included private 1:1 lessons blush

KatieScarlett2833 Tue 15-Jul-08 12:09:42

My daughter could swim, age 6, after 4 lessons. My son took 2 years to learn.

I remember sitting week in, week out, thinking "Is he ever going to get this?". And then he did.

Stick with it.

newforold Tue 15-Jul-08 12:30:20

Agree with the others who are saying stick with it.
Dd is 7 and can scuttle about confidently with a float but can only manage a few strokes without.
However she is confident around water now and we can have lots of fun at the pool just mucking around.
She'll get there in the end. She's had lessons on and off for 2 yrs now.

Cod Tue 15-Jul-08 12:30:48

Message withdrawn

KatieScarlett2833 Tue 15-Jul-08 12:34:50

And can I just say, only now am I getting my reward for sticking with it. It's school holidays here and DD and DS are both off swimming at the local pool (for free! thanks, Fife Council)for the second day in a row, leaving me time to faff about on MN.

And I don't have to go too, bliss. I hate swimming.

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