Although we’ve always swum with Water Babies, N’s had a few teachers during his 3 years of swimming. Mostly to do with changing days, going from a Wednesday to Friday, and for the last 18 months or so, to a Saturday. However, there’s obviously been holiday cover and teachers moving to different areas or jobs which means we’ve had weeks where we’ve had stand ins or swaps for a couple of weeks.
N’s teacher for the last 18 months taught her last one of our classes the other week. Although N does always talk about Lynsey being his swimming teacher, given the ups and downs that N still likes to test me with, I was surprised at how strongly he (and the rest of the children) felt about her finishing. We’re always the first Water Babies class at our pool on a Saturday but even though it’s always a rush moving from one class to the other, Lynsey was essentially mobbed by the 3 and 4 year olds all wanting a hug to say thank you and goodbye. It was really sweet to see.
I think the change in teacher has gone really smoothly. It’s definitely something that’s done well in our classes. I don’t think N’s that worried when people change at the activities that he does. He’s pretty relaxed when it comes to changes, but not all children are. On this occasion, we’ve had the outgoing teacher weaning off the classes, having temporary teachers the children already know, and then introducing the new teacher Laura alongside the old one. Laura came along and helped out in the pool, then this week was the first lesson where she taught us, with Lynsey on the side giving insight into the different children and their capabilities.
I’d also been talking to N out of the pool for the last few weeks, about the change in teacher, and trying to get him to be excited about a new teacher. I was hoping he’d want to impress and work hard at all the activities. So he was expecting to see Laura teaching this week, and he was quite happy to take part in most of the activities with no problems.
Some people think changing teachers is a bad thing. Yes generally I agree, but with swimming I think N’s benefitred.
- He’s had to adjust and make those connections again with different teachers.
- Each teacher has a slightly different way of teaching and it means if N struggles with one method, he might benefit from a different explanation or support.
- N’s not very confident about his ability in the pool. ‘I can’t’ is a favoured refrain from him. So having different teachers tell him ‘well done’ or that he’s done a good job at xyz, rather than just me, helps reinforce that he can actually swim if he puts his mind to it.
We’ll be sad to see Lynsey go. I think she’s been great for N – keeping things light hearted, while trying to encourage, and be stricter when necessary to get him to try activities he wouldn’t always try with me. Hopefully he’ll continue to do well with Laura in our final term of swimming with Water Babies.
Disclosure: We swim with and blog for Water Babies. All words and opinions are my own.