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behaviour at swimming lessons Lock Rss

My 3.5year old dd attends swimming lessons once a week. While she behaves perfectly well when it is her turn with the instructor, she is shocking while waiting her turn. She is supposed to SIT on the step while waiting but simply cannot do this. She has to splash, practise kicking, practise blowing bubbles, turn onto her belly and walk on her hands up and down the step, play with the toys etc etc etc!!!!! There are only 4 kids in the class so the wait time is not toooooo long. I have spoken to her all week about the expected behaviour and she knows full well she is supposed to sit on her bottom. I have spoken to her in the middle of lessons, threatened to take her home, taken her to time out out of the water and now the instructor has taken to putting her in time out on the dreaded "top step" (This only stops her while on the top step. Once back in the water she repeats her actions) I am very embarrassed by her behaviour as I am a teacher and the pool we attend is frequented by parents from the school I teach at (it doesn't look good that I can't control my own dd lol!) I can't change pools as there are none in my local area. I have looked around and many (seems like all but I'm sure its not) children sit like angels. Are there others out there who have kids who do this? Any strategies to change their behaviour? Anyone who can simply make me feel better by telling me their dear child is the same??? By the way, she is really a VERY good child on most other occasions - just not at swimming!!!!!


Oh I feel your pain! My 2 3/4 year old daughter used to be like this and I dreaded taking her to swimming as she was just so overexcited & naughty in the pool. She wouldn't listen to anything we said or did and thought it was a big joke (she rarely even listened to the teacher either). Things changed when we put her up a level/class with something with more challenge and ever since we have never had a problem - it seems in our case she was just bored of the same old thing.

But in your case, if she is still being challenged by the class she is in, if it were me I would probably do the whole 'I'm going to count to 5 and if you don't sit still nicely we are going home'. Then count to 5 and commit! I would probably even march her straight to the car & home in her wet togs to bring home the immediacy of it. If she enjoys her swimming, hopefully you might only have to do this once to make her understand you mean business. That's all I could suggest sorry, as it seems like you have done a great job of trying everything else!

Best of luck anyway - fingers crossed....

Mum to Kayla born 15.03.06 & Maya born 14.06.08

Hi! I have experienced this myself! My DD1 is 5 now, and has only just stopped doing this in her lessons. She stopped once she went up a level, so she was more challenged. She is very excitable, and had to do time out there a couple of times. I would have to sit there and keep reminding her to stay on the wall while waiting her turn. I think she was really bored with the waiting, and when they are young, some kids just dont understand the concept that they have to wait. Now, all the kids pretty much swim at the same time, so it is rare that she is not interracting with the teacher, or performing some task or other.

kerrie, VIC, DD 12/8/03, DD 12/10/05, DD 14/9/07, DD 4/1/10

My DS used to do this alot. He still does when he gets bored. I used to completely ignore his behaviour as the more attention I geve him the more he did it. Id leave it to the teacher to tell him what was appropriate and what wasn't. At DS's swim school their tactic for bad behaviour/not listening is to sit them on the edge of the pool for a few minutes. They always get a couple of warnings.

Karen, DS1 31/8/03, DD 12/3/07, DS2 16/12/09

I believe that if she misbehaves you should look at her and say calmly yet firmly, (her name) you need to sit down on your bottom quietly. If you keep being silly you will have a time out. If she keeps it up look at her again and say calmly yet firmly.....(her name) i told you to stop being silly, now you will have a time out. Take her out of the pool and give her 3 minute time out. If she cries or carries on during the time out ignore it. Don't speak to her or give any eye contact. Once that's over say to her (her name) you need to start big girl listening ok. (or something along those lines) Once back in the pool if she starts to misbehave again say to her (her name) stop (the particular behaviour) or i will take you home. If she continues say to her (her name) i told you to stop (the behaviour) now we are going home. Take her straight home. Don't give empty threats of saying you will leave, just do it. Carry her out kicking and screaming if you have to. That way she will learn that she needs to listen to mummy or you will follow through with the consequences.

Does she enjoy swimming lessons? It may be a possibility that she is bored or not enjoying them any more. OR it's a 3 year old pushing the they do lol lol.

Good luck smile
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