Teaching pre-school-aged children

A pre school aged girl wearing blue floaties and holding onto the pool edge 

The gap between Infant Aquatics and school lessons can seem huge. The pre-school age group often have the skills to participate in higher stages but they lack the maturity these skills need.

As daunting as it may seem to have a group of 3-year-olds jumping around in your class, it can actually provide for some serious fun and a great feeling of accomplishment watching them improve!

Tips to ensure these classes run smoothly

It takes a different skill set teach children at this age. To ensure your classes run smoothly and effectively you need to understand that children in this age group (3-5 years old) typically don’t have the ability to concentrate for long periods of time.

  • Avoid distraction when teaching strokes

When teaching stroke skills, it's important to keep the students swimming as much as possible to avoid distraction - as their minds will wander easily! Techniques such as wave and chain swimming can help with this.

  • Try a circuit setup

With other skills such as exhaling under water (bubbles), floating and other movements in water, it can be useful to use a circuit setup. This would include multiple stations where students move around and try them all. This will help with keeping all students engaged, as well as allowing students to have as much practice with skills as possible.

With circuits it is important to keep all activities within the lane space you are working in. Only include one skill that will require your assistance, with the rest being skills the students can carry out on their own (e.g. blowing bubbles).

The pre-school age group is actually one of the most rewarding groups to teach as they can improve in no time at all. They will require some patience and compassion, but with the right teaching techniques the skills they learn at this stage of their life will provide the foundations for their swimming journey.

Why you should update your CPR skills.

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Research shows a person's skills in CPR decrease by 50% after just two months if they haven't practised the skill. Update your CPR certificate now!

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