We have a green cap, ladies and gentlemen! If you’ve been following our swim journey (introduction and follow-up) with British Swim School Round Lake Beach, you already know that Brooklyn has made great progress swimming independently for short stretches and Owen is going under water, floating and allowing water into his ears. But the big news is that Brooklyn moved up a level this past week after ten swimming lessons, signifying that she is safe to swim without a floatation device! She is so proud of her new green cap and the skills that it signifies.
Owen has had a slight backslide in putting his ears in the water since starting back to school. He is exhausted and cries on our way to swimming, yet as soon as we pull in he is jumping and cannot wait to get into the water. He simply loves swim lessons and lives for his final five minutes of play time.
I truly believe the biggest gain that British Swim School Round Lake Beach has given my family is floating. I watch Brooke practice swimming and when she gets tired, she floats on her back to take a few breaths and then continues swimming. Owen lays back into a float on Sam’s shoulder before practicing going under water to the edge. I also love how much these instructors enjoy the kids–they are genuinely smiling and laughing with them throughout the lessons. Even if my kids are misbehaving, splashing water in their teacher’s faces (yes, as embarrassing as it is…it happens), the teachers try to make a game of their antics to fill the time with teaching rather than setting them out of the pool as discipline.
Another skill both kids have completely mastered is exiting the pool without using stairs or a ladder. This is appropriate and necessary for any water safety class because unknown bodies of water can be unpredictable. Owen has continued to keep his boundaries of only jumping to Sam when he is called into the pool and climbs out safely using the mantra “elbow, belly, knee, knee.” A “monkey-crawl” has also been established to teach the kids how to safely navigate around the perimeter of the pool, of course in a game-like fashion, by collecting rings.
Brooklyn’s favorite accomplishment is diving for sticks and rings. Learning to swim deeper into the water can present many challenges for children, including holding their breath long enough. Sam challenges her to swim in different patterns at the bottom of the pool along with asking her to collect all dive sticks in one breath, if possible. She loves the challenge and has gained loads of confidence.
Working with British Swim School Round Lake Beach has been easy and flexible. If a time frame didn’t work one week, rescheduling was easy and a class time was found within the week. One class was cancelled on Labor Day because the gym was closed, but we were notified and offered a make-up class on a different day.
These classes have greatly reduced my anxiety around the water. We are still cautious on the narrow pool deck, but I know if either child slipped into the water they could push off of the bottom and pop up to a float or grab onto the side and climb out on their own. For children who are not naturally afraid of the water, this program taught a healthy fear of it and a realistic knowledge of their abilities. I have watched other classes running during our session and saw apprehensive children improve by going under water, floating with their ears in the water, and jumping into the pool.
Swimming is one of those life skills most parents really want their kids to have, and it has been so rewarding to see the growth in my two children, ages six and four, in only ten weeks! Call British Swim School Round Lake Beach and set up a lesson; the friendly instructors will play with your child as they gain independence in the water. Tell Sam and Chris that Little Lake County sent you and you’re ready to check it out!
British Swim School Round Lake Beach
540 E. Rollins Road (LA Fitness), Round Lake Beach | (773) 661-4004
British Swim School Waukegan
452 Lakehurst Road (LA Fitness), Waukegan | (773) 661-4004
Disclosure: British Swim School is a paid advertising partner and provided us with swim lessons in order to facilitate my reviews. All thoughts and opinions are the writer’s own.