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This is it.  We’re in the home stretch.  Your instructors have only one last thing they want to tell you . . .

Stay the Course. Translated, that means DON’T PULL YOUR CHILD OUT EARLY! If you do, even once, she will cry all the harder during the next lessons because, hey, it worked before, right?  This is the same intermittent reward system that hooks gamblers.  So read a book, call a friend, go to the front desk and watch the lesson on the TV – just make sure her bikini stays in the water for the full 25 minutes.  Ultimately, this approach shortens the time it takes for your child to adjust to lessons.

Why do kids stop crying?  Wish I knew.  Sometimes an instructor finds the trick that soothes them.  I know one instructor who can get almost any kid to stop crying by repeatedly bouncing a ball off the wall.  It’s hypnotizing.  Others feel it is simply a matter of time.  One day, after a pre-determined but unknown amount of time, a switch flips and the child comes to the lesson ready to play and learn.  And it should be reassuring that a child’s initial reaction to swim lessons has absolutely nothing to do with her future liking or aptitude for the water.

Just wait, a few lessons down the road and you’ll be the one patting some new parent on the shoulder and saying, “Hang in there; it get’s better.”