Do Kids Need Swimming Lessons?

Up until this weekend, BigBrother was timid in the pool. He would cling to me for most of the time spent in my parent’s pool. Eventually he would find enough nerve to jump off the side into someone’s waiting arms, and on a rare occasion, he might swim with swimmies (you know, floaties) and a pool noodle. But none of that “on his own” business. Until he saw his sister swimming like a fish this past weekend.

Now?

Swimming

LittleBrother was always a fish. He would “swim” with his swimmies on, occasionally asking for help when he got tired. He wasn’t really a fan of putting his face in the water though and would sometimes panic if he thought you weren’t paying attention (which we always were).

Grin

I missed swimming lesson sign ups for all classes in our area. Though LittleBrother is technically too young, I have been informed by parents who are better than me that BigBrother should have already had two years of said classes under his swimming trunk elastic. I have failed yet again.

But do kids need swimming lessons?

I ask this not knowing the answer. I’m all about safety. I am 100% for children learning the importance of safety around water, how to properly swim and to learn to love and respect the water. But classroom settings, even in a pool, stress BigBrother out. In fact, the thought of swimming class stresses me out and both of my sons play heavily on how I react. Will swimming lessons be beneficial? Are they an absolute necessity?

I understand that my kids are still using floating devices and are therefore not technically swimming. I would never leave them unattended in their swimming devices just like I would never leave them alone without those helpful bits of floatie stuff. I’m not asking for permission to do so. What I’m wondering is if I have to shell out money for something I can technically teach the kids on my own or, really, that they can learn while in the pool with others.

This isn’t like the issue of organized sports. I believe they learn all kinds of things in a setting like t-ball (for which we have a year end pizza party tonight) or soccer (which went incredibly well this past winter). I think things like basketball camp can teach kids great skills that they can use in a team setting and even in real life. And, really, I’m not the one who should be teaching either of these kids how to properly handle a soccer ball with their feet seeing as how I never played. But I can swim and I can swim well. Can I teach them? Should I teach them? Will they learn from someone else better?

In short: did your kids take swimming lessons or did you teach them or a combination of the two or neither or… please chime in on my inner dialogue, okay?

_
[This is the last week to win the $100 Visa gift card!]
[This blog is nominated for two BlogLuxe awards (Eye Candy & Blog You Learned the Most From) while Chronicles of Munchkin Land is nominated for Most Inspiring. Vote if you feel so inclined.]