School is out or going to be out soon for much of the country. Summer’s almost here.
Have you signed up your kids for swimming lessons yet?
I consider swimming lessons one of the most important activities you can sign your kids up for. It doesn’t matter if you don’t have a pool and don’t live near an ocean, lake or river. I just think it’s important that kids know how to swim.
For one, they may have friends who have a pool. If not now, then later in life.
You could also at some point move into a home with a pool or near the ocean, a lake or river where your family might want to go swimming.
Or your kids could just finally convince you that it’s time to go to the city pool.
I’ll be the first to admit that swimming lessons in the early days do not give me peace of mind. Far from it. They make me worry more!
When kids first learn to swim just a little bit, they’re overconfident. I feel that this makes them more at risk. They swim into deeper water and may be more inclined to try a pool out without supervision. But it’s necessary so that they can learn to be stronger swimmers and cut the risk down.
We have rules about swimming in my family. While we do not have a pool, my inlaws do.
Rule #1: Children are not allowed in the pool without an adult. Not even a toe or fingertip.
Rule #2: Children will obey the adults supervising them in the pool.
Rule #3: There will always be at least one adult whose sole job is to watch the kids in the pool. One adult per child is better, with each adult assigned to a particular child.
Rule #4: Children will obey their swimming instructors during swimming class.
Rule #5: No running near the pool.
My kids know that if they break a pool rule, they will not be allowed to go swimming the rest of that day and likely not the next time everyone else goes swimming.
You may also want to check out PoolSafety.gov, even if you don’t own a swimming pool.
If your kids aren’t in swimming lessons yet and are not strong swimmers, get them signed up. Lessons at community and city pools are generally more affordable than private lessons, of course, but they also fill up quickly in the lower levels. Check your city’s website to see what’s available in your area.