Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Miss Kathy and Pine Lake Pool

Welcome to a new segment on Because Babies Grow Up that I'm calling Tuesdays in Tennessee. We are having so much fun discovering this beautiful part of the country and I want to share some of the charming experiences we're having. First up is a look at Sammi's swimming lessons.

Close to our house are signs for Pine Lake Pool with a phone number for more info on swimming lessons. Brent and I were intrigued and thought that would be fun for Sammi next year. We happened to be talking with a neighbor who said Miss Kathy teaches all ages, especially little ones. Brent wandered up to her house to get more info but she was busy with a class and had more students congregating for the next class. Brent asked a parent a few questions and came back home. Just a couple days later Miss Kathy stopped by our house and dropped off some info about swim lessons. I love living in a small, close-knit community! That parent mentioned to Miss Kathy that someone had come to find out about swim lessons and said he rented a house just down the road and of course, Miss Kathy knew exactly which house that was!

As it turned out, she had a class started that Monday that was a perfect fit for Sammi. The classes were Mon-Thur for an hour each day. We prepped Sammi for the adventure and she could hardly wait for Monday to come! She was so excited all Monday morning and tried to get me to take her three hours early! Her enthusiasm didn't stop once we got there, either.

Sammi listened so attentively to Miss Kathy and did everything she asked Sammi to do. She wore a bubble on her back (see pics) and poured water on her toes, knees, shoulders and head as Miss Kathy sang the "Sprinkle Song."

I thought that in 4 days Sammi would probably get used to being in the water and maybe figure out how to kick her feet. Boy was I wrong! Miss Kathy taught them how to kick, alright, but she also taught them how to move through the water indepdently with all kinds of floatation devices. By the last day she could swim the length of the pool and back with just her bubble on her back. Wow! And Sammi's kicking evolved from crazed, energetic flailings to measured, purposeful thrusts that propelled her where she wanted to go. What an amazing transformation. I'm hoping we can go swimming this week so she doesn't forget it all.

Sammi's class was small and so she had lots of attention from her teacher. But, Miss Kathy was also very good at setting Sammi to a task so she could work with another student who needed a little extra help. She was the most patient teacher I have ever seen in any teaching situation, ever.

I asked Sammi what Miss Kathy did and she said, "She taught me shopping carts and how to swim." When I asked Sammi her favorite part of swim lessons she said, "The favorite part of my swim lessons, I like to do shopping. I like the shopping part." They pretended a kick board was a shopping cart, extended their arms out straight and kicked their way to the end of the pool where they took pretned items from the side of the pool, put them on their shoping cart and swam back. Sammi LOVED it!

I'm already excited for next summer so that Sammi can have a few weeks' worth of lessons.

Are you on Twitter? I'll be at the #GNO party tonight (@ajpassey). We're talking about affordable kids crafts and ideas. We'll be joined by Crayola and there's a nifty giveaway, too! Come see what the fun's all about.


Kristin said...

So fun! I wanted to get Baylie in a Mommy & Me swimming class, but didn't get it done.

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