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SCHOOL AGE LESSONS

Based on a logical, six-level progression that helps swimmers about 6 – 13 years of age develop their water safety, survival and swimming skills.  It is designed to give participants a positive learning experience.

Level 1: Introduction to Water Skills

For children ages 6-13 years

Prerequisites: for children who are not yet able/comfortable submerging underwater. 

Skills Learned at this Stage:

Designed for participants uncomfortable in water or with limited swimming experience.  Explore water safety and basic swimming skills, such as: submerging, supported front and back floats, rolling front to back and back to front, gliding, kicking, front crawl arms, and jumping in.
 

  • Enter and exit water using ladder, steps, or side        

  • Roll from front to back and back to front       

  • Don’t just pack it, wear your jacket

  • Blow bubbles through mouth and nose      

  • Tread water using arm and hand actions      

  • Recognizing an emergency

  • Bobbing

  • Alternating and simultaneous leg actions on front and back    

  • How to call for help

  • Open eyes underwater and retrieve submerged objects  

  • Alternating and simultaneous arm actions on front and back  

  • Too much sun is no fun

  • Front and back glides and back float

  • Combined arm and leg actions on front and back

  • Recover to a vertical position from a front glide and back float or glide 

  • Staying safe around aquatic environments

  • Recognizing the lifeguards

Level 2: Fundamental Aquatic Skills

For children ages 6-13 years

Prerequisites: Complete Level 1

Skills Learned at this Stage:

Designed for participants unable to travel 2 body lengths with minimal assistance. Focus is building independence, good body control and position, forward movement, and water safety.  Introduces rotary breathing, prolonged front floats, treading water, and elementary backstroke.
 

  • Enter water by stepping or jumping from the side    

  • Recover from a front and back float or glide to a vertical position  

  • Don’t just pack it, wear your jacket

  • Exit water using ladder, steps or side        

  • Roll from front to back and back to front     

  • Recognizing an emergency

  • Fully submerge and hold breath 

  • Change the direction of travel while swimming on front or back  

  • How to call for help

  • Bobbing 

  • Tread water using arm and leg actions 

  • Too much sun is no fun

  • Open eyes underwater and retrieve submerged objects  

  • Combined arm and leg actions on front and back 

  • Look before you leap

  • Front, jellyfish, and tuck floats 

  • Finning arm action on back

  • Think so you don’t sink

  • Front and back glides and back float  

  • Staying safe around aquatic environments  

  • Reach or throw, don’t go

Level 3: Stroke Development

For children ages 6-13 years

Prerequisites: Complete Level 2

Skills Learned at this Stage:

Must be able to float on front and back independently for 10 seconds to enroll.  Skills are performed independently, improving coordination of previous skills with longer distance in deep water.  Introduces front crawl, breaststroke kick, dolphin kick, elementary backstroke, and scissor kick.
 

  • Enter water by jumping from the side

  • Back float      

  • Scissors kick

  • Headfirst entry from the side in sitting and kneeling positions

  • Change from vertical to horizontal position on front and back 

  • Reach or throw, don’t go

  • Tread water                

  • Think twice before going near cold water or ice

  • Bobbing while moving toward safety  

  • Push off in a streamlined position then begin flutter and dolphin kicks on front

  • Rotary breathing             

  • Look before you leap

  • Survival float 

  • Front crawl and elementary backstroke

Level 4: Stroke Improvement

For children ages 6-13 years

Prerequisites: Complete Level 3

Skills Learned at this Stage:

Swimmers must be able to swim front crawl and elementary backstroke independently 15 yards to enroll. Builds endurance in front crawl, elementary backstroke, treading water with modified scissor kick.  Introduces backcrawl, sidestroke, turns at wall, butterfly, breaststroke, and feet-first surface dive.
 

  • Headfirst entry from the side in compact and stride positions

  • Front crawl and backstroke open turns 

  • Reach or throw, don’t go

  • Tread water using 2 different kicks 

  • Recreational water illnesses

  • Swim underwater 

  • Front and back crawl, elementary backstroke, breaststroke, sidestroke,
    and butterfly 

  • Think so you don’t sink

  • Feetfirst surface dive

  • Look before you leap

  • Survival swimming

  • Push off in a streamlined position then begin flutter and dolphin kicks on back

Level 5: Stroke Refinement

For children ages 6-13 years

Prerequisites: Complete Level 4

Skills Learned at this Stage:

Swimmers must be able to swim front and back crawl 25 yards to enroll.  Builds endurance and refines breaststroke, sidestroke, front crawl, back crawl, butterfly, elementary backstroke, and treading water.  Introduces head-first surface dive, front crawl and back crawl flip turns, and importance of CPR/First Aid.
 

  • Shallow-angle dive from the side

  • Front and back crawl, elementary backstroke, breaststroke, sidestroke and butterfly

  • Reach or throw, don’t go

  • Shallow-angle dive from the side then glide and begin a front stroke

  • Look before you leap

  • Standard scull 

  • Think so you don’t sink

  • Tuck and pike surface dives

  • How to call for help and the importance of knowing first aid and CPR

  • Think twice before going near cold water or ice

  • Front flip turn and backstroke flip turn while swimming 

  • Wave, tide or ride, follow the guide

  • Tread water

  • Recreational water illnesses

Level 6: Swimming & Skill Proficiency

For children ages 6-13 years

Prerequisites: Complete Level 5

Skills Learned at this Stage:

Swimmers must be able to swim 50 yards front crawl and elementary backstroke to enroll.  Builds endurance and refines front crawl, back crawl, elementary backstroke, butterfly, and sidestroke.  Introduces butterfly and breaststroke turns, feet-first surface dive, retrieval of object from deep water, and personal water safety.  Encourage Junior Lifeguard and Swim Instructor Aide as future courses.
 

  • Refines the strokes so participants swim them with ease, efficiency, power and smoothness over greater distances.

  • Level 6 is designed with “menu” options that focus on preparing participants for lifetime fitness and safety, as well as more advanced courses, such as the Water Safety Instructor course, or other aquatic activities, including competitive swimming or diving. Options include - 

    • Personal Water Safety.

    • Fitness Swimmer.

    • Fundamentals of Diving.

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