March 18, 2009

Fourth Grade Swimming Lessons

My boss at the pool has been working hard, she has been wheeling and dealing, begging and pleading, plotting and scheming. After months and months of all of the above. She received enough grant money to give every 4th grader in our city free swim lessons for two weeks.

Yesterday 2 buses delivered over 100 kids to the pool.

The kids were lined up on one side of the pool and told to swim across. There were four teachers stationed across the pool. Depending on how far the kids could swim placed them in their class. I was on the other side of the pool if they made it to me without looking like they were struggling I sent them on.

It is a very interesting thing that happens when you put a ten year old in the water with his/her peers. There were kids who couldn't swim a lick who made it across that pool because they had a rep to protect. There were kids who looked at us like we were nut jobs and didn't budge an inch. There were kids who were downright insulted when I told them to stop.

Anyway the teaching is interesting. My classes are gaining about a levels worth of knowledge a day. Peer pressure and not wanting to look dumb is HUGE! If one can do it you can be sure the rest are going to do it. Or drown proving they can.

Today, I took them into the deep to tread water. In the class I have one boy on the husky side. We all know that if he just chills he is going to float and do just fine. However, every time I put him in the deep he goes under. He doesn't get that it is in his head. He just freaks and goes under. All the kids in the class don't understand why they can't tread water. They haven't caught on that he is using them like a frog uses Lilly pads. He jumps from one kid to the next in a desperate attempt not to sink. Meanwhile, they go under and he moves on to the next kid.

I shouldn't laugh I really shouldn't but if you could just see the confused look on all their faces. They really don't understand why they are having a hard time treading water.

Today will be a busy day, I have bike ride to get done, swim lessons to teach, a D.A.R.E graduation to attend, and short course state swim meet begins this evening. S. will be swimming a 400 IM. Then the rest of our weekend will be swimming, swimming, swimming.

Right now it looks like she will place somewhere around 10th in the state. It will be fun to see exactly where she ends up.  I won't have a lot of time to post but I will try to keep my twitter updated and throw a picture or two up when I can. Have a great weekend and I will see you on Monday!


4kidsandcrazy said...

That is great! How fun to see the kids rise to the challenge. I hope they keep it up. Are you ready to kill any of them yet?

Heather Bowles said...

You are brave. I think I would just drown them all out of anger.