Now that my big girl, R, is 3, I have enrolled her in swim class. I waited until she turned 3 for a few reasons. I was told that children learn fear around that age; and, even if they were not afraid of the water before then, they may then become fearful. But, my main reason is because I don’t have to get in the pool with her. Instead, I can simply watch dryly from the deck with my little girl, M, who is 1-year-old, at my side. This prevents me from having to pay a sitter or find a convenient time when my husband is home to watch her.
My friends often talk about being “behind” on their children’s swimming skills. Here, in San Francisco, it is popular to enroll your child at a swim school like La Petite Baleen before babies can even crawl. You will often hear moms comparing ribbon colors. Some take it a step further and get private lessons because they felt their child was not excelling.