- Speak all student names
- Ensure all students know instructor’s name.
- Continue to earn trust by demonstrating all activities and offering modified alternatives.
- Reinforce routines.
- Emphasize fun during routines.
- Smile. Laugh. Play!
Bubbles and Bobs
Blow bubbles for five seconds.
Bob the same number of times as you are old up to 10 times.
Walk around the benches.
When the swimmer crosses from one bench to the next, kiss the water.
Lift one foot out of the water, including all five toes.
BONUS: Do it without holding on to anything.
SUPER BONUS: Do it with 5 toes out of the water and spinning around two times. Head can remain in or out of the water.
Walk and glide
With the benches a little apart, walk in the square moving independently.
When swimmer gets to the gap encourage a front glide.
Do a supported reach, or glide, or assisted jump to cross the water.
Encourage chin in water.
Encourage kissing water.
Supported front glides with instructor
Begin close, and support swimmer so that they do not go underwater.
Go one at a time. Everyone goes 2-3 times.
Encourage chin in water.
Encourage kissing water.
Bake a Cake
One of the best dynamic games filled with opportunities to go underwater.
Variants include, “make a pizza,” “make a taco,” “bake muffins (with rings)”
-Get a hoola hoop, or a circular object and make that your “cake”
-Have swimmers circle around the hoola hoop and hold the sides.
-Take turns asking each swimmer what they would like in their cake. Exp: “Susie, what would you like in your cake?” “CHOCOLATE!” “Ok, lets put some chocolate in the cake!”
Take turns splashing water into the hoola hoop and repeat “Put some chocolate into our cake!”
-After each swimmer has put their own ingredient into the cake, have each swimmer grab the edge of the hoola hoop and push it down to their feet to “put the cake in the oven.” Encourage each swimmer to put their nose, mouth or face in the water while doing so.
-Do another short activity while the cake “bakes.”
-Have a swimmer, or swimmers check the cake by putting their face, lips, or nose in the water. Ask, “Is the cake done? Is it ready to eat?”
-Have swimmers reach down to the sunken hoola hoop to their shoulders, or noses if they can, and slowly, heavily, lift the “cake” to the surface.
-Have swimmers blow bubbles on the cake (inside the hoola hoop) to cool it off so you can eat it.
-Eat the cake by either smashing faces into the water inside the cake (voluntarily!), or getting a bucket and dumping onto their faces or heads. Make sure everyone participates! either dump water on their shoulders, on the back of their head, or on their face. If scooping water, make sure they do something to be a part of the fantasy.
-Be enthusiastic, and exclaim how delicious it is!
Jumps in water with support
“Do you want to go underwater?”
While waiting for turn, do jumps on the bench or in shallow water. Must jump high enough so belly button goes over the surface.
Reach for the Wall
Position a bench so that it faces the wall about 1 body length away.
Swimmers take turns with support leaning forward and grabbing the edge with both hands.
Encourage swimmers to kiss the water as they reach and fall forward.
Put two hands on the wall, and two feet and monkey walk sideways. At the end of the bench, reach back and return to the rotation.
Float toy sinking
Swimmers should press three floating toys to the bottom with their feet.
Cannot use hands.
BONUS: Swimmers use face to sink the toy.
- Keep your face aimed at all swimmers all of the time.
- Avoid turning your back.
- Watch for wobbling legs. Younger swimmers can be knocked over by a wave. Stay close. Help often.
- Push for underwater but be quick to offer a modified alternative.
“Put your face in the water. No? Kiss the water.”
Supported Back Float / Glide
Have the swimmer rest on the parent’s shoulder. Lean into their neck and arm.
If ADVANCED hold the back of the head.
Jump the belly button over surface
Standing in shallow water, or on the tot benches, jump high enough that the swimmer’s belly button goes above the surface of the water.
Jump up, and land on feet.
Kicking across the gap
Arrange the benches so there is a sizable gap.
Kick across the gap using a kickboard, a barbell, or a floating support tool.
Supported Back Glides
Transition from Head on Shoulder to Head in Hand positions.
Earn trust by providing consistent support.
Lay on back with only 2 fingers to support.
Supported back floats with two fingers under the neck only.
Hold swimmer at the surface without falling underwater with 2 fingers on back of the neck. Add additional support as necessary.
Success = 2 finger support for 3 seconds.
Supported Front Glide with a reach
Stand *just* outside of the swimmer’s reach.
Have them follow the front glide script. Ask them to reach for your “shoulders.”
Once they reach you, walk backwards providing support.
Push floating toys with face using bubbles.
Swimmers use bubbles with face in the water to push floating disks or balls into their area.
Jump for the wall, and dip.
From the instructor jump/glide to the wall.
At the wall go underwater one time.
Well done today! Come back tomorrow!