Our 6-weeks of swim lessons at Baptist East Milestone Wellness Center is over. Our last lesson was Sunday evening, Memorial Day weekend. There were only 4 kids in the class this week - the 4 of us from Highview (see the photo above). I don't know where the rest of the class was, but it was fun having just us with the instructor. The lesson started out the same as it had been for the last few weeks: practicing kicking, holding & reaching for the bar on the side of the pool, dunking underwater, and reaching for toys above & under the water. This week they put all the skills together and had our final "test". I believe the test was more for the mommies than it was for the babies. The instructor had us all get out of the pool and walk to the edge. She stayed in the water and one at a time we dropped our children into the pool - as if they had fallen in. It took every ounce of strength I had not to reach in a pull Nathan to the surface as soon as he dropped in. We stood there and watched as our child came to the surface, turned and reached for the bar on the side of the pool (all of the elements they had learned). It really was amazing to see that they could do it, but still VERY nerve-wracking.
We are hoping to sign Nathan up for the next session in the fall. He graduated from the "Polliwogs" program (he has the certificate to prove it), and will be a Jelllyfish. The instructor is considering adding an advanced Polliwog class for those kids who are beyond the intro class, but not yet ready for the Jellyfish level. If they do that, I will sign Nathan up for that class. Ashley Lawrence was interested in doing the same for Ellie.
I highly recommend swim lessons for every young child. I didn't want Nathan to be afraid of the water and I believe this experience has made him better aquainted with the water. Do I think he could "save himself" if he fell in unsupervised? Absolutely not, but he is not afraid to get his head wet. I have heard of other swim programs where the kids play, splash and sing silly songs the whole time and never practice any skills or even go underwater. I really liked the program at Baptist East Milestone Wellness Center and I would recommend it to anyone.