When is my child ready for classes where they get in without me in the water?
Many parents wonder when their child will be ready to move up into an independent class. As a basic guide, readiness for independent classes usually occurs between 3.5- 4.5yrs, however there are important factors to consider.
Your child needs to demonstrate readiness to transition into independent classes. They need to have developed the social, emotional and communication skills to cope independently in the water. Your child needs to demonstrate the points below:
1. Willingness to separate from caregiver
2. Able to take instruction from the teacher. Be able to focus on the task provided.
3. Ability to wait their turn. This demonstrates empathy needed to be able to function in a group. It requires patience, an ability to delay wants and a preparedness to follow rules. This is a developmental stage that happens sometime between 3.5 – 4.5 years of age.
4. Be readily submerging and/or reasonably comfortable in the water.
Waiting until your child is ready increases the likelihood of a smooth and enjoyable transition. Putting a child up before they are ready may make them regress or not progress as quickly as they would do if they were still in water orientation. Most importantly, they may stop enjoying swimming lessons.
In monetary terms, lessons for a child kept in water orientation until they are ready will cost less than lessons for a child who has been put up too early.
If your child is not yet ready for independent class but is happy and enjoying water orientation classes, there is no problem. Just relax, keep bringing your child and enjoy your time together.