23 Oct 2008

Make a splash

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Tuesday is swim day. We go at lunch time when the learner pool isn't in use by school groups.

It's not so long since Thomas was nervous and clung to me in the pool, tolerating only short periods in the water. Now he wears goggles and swims over and under with true dedication and joy. I can usually manage to give him one helpful tip per week to improve his doggy paddling, bum in the air, legs splayed swimming style, but he tells me he doesn't need my help and he can do it himself. He's right, he is getting about well enough and is getting better and stronger each week.

Lady takes my advice slightly better and she swims now in a sleek, smooth manner, her long limbs pulling through the water. We raced a length last week, and she kept up with me, though I was looking backwards every second stroke to check on Duncan.

Duncan just loves it and grins the whole time we're there, even enjoying the showers after. He has me pull him as he holds a float. I try to do a life saving stroke as I drag him along but he's the wriggliest and bossiest rescue subject ever, and insists that I swim faster and go from left to right. I tell you, I certainly get a work out anyway.

One of Duncan's favourite things now is watching people go off the diving board in the adjacent diving pool, and the bigger the person, the better the splash. Last week, a very large man made him very happy by repeatedly plummeting off the board, creating gratifyingly gigantic turbulence in the pool. Duncan couldn't withhold a little shout of glee each time the big fella went off.

He emulates in his own small scale way, jumping from the poolside very carefully so as not to make a big splash or to go underwater. Sometimes he enacts a little pantomime of stretches and toe touching before he goes in, muttering the script from a relevant episode of Tommy Zoom.

At 1.20 a school group arrives and we retire to the baby pool for a few minutes to watch them. Duncan likes it when they all sit on the side splashing their legs back and forth creating lots of noise and white water. He joins in from where he sits. About thirty school children are crammed into a pool which we four usually have had to ourselves for the previous 45 minutes. Lady can't help feeling a bit sorry for them as they are restricted to a narrow strip about 10m across and must follow instructions to the letter.

Ah the delights and freedom of home education.
Smug...us? Just a bit.


Anonymous said...

Swimming day sounds like fun. Since I go very cold at the mention of water, visits to the pool were supervised by Elly's dad. I think I missed out.

Sharon McDaid said...

Every single Tuesday I dread the pool trip and the thought of getting into a swimsuit and into cool water (actually it's quite nice, if not exactly a bath) and having to get everyone changed and dried at the end. I try to put them off suggesting we go for a nice walk instead. But the children hold fast and force me to get my lazy ass out the door and I always enjoy it when we do!

Oh, we usually get 2 portions of proper chips on the way home too!

Alyric said...

Well, the chips make it all worthwhile. It takes a lot to get me near cold water.

Sharon McDaid said...

Alyric, I analysed my behaviour in an applied fashion and deduced that chips act as positive reinforcement to teach the skill of bringing my children to the pool. I don't know how I'm ever going to generalise the skill though.

Anonymous said...

A very rightful smugness.

Elementary education has been industrialized (on a conveyor belt) for too long.

Sharon McDaid said...

Sadly I agree. I wish it could be improved for all children.

Maddy said...

yes my pal homeschools and dreads the holidays because then all their usual haunts are over flowing with people, whereas the rest the year they have the place to themselves.

If you have a free mo pop over and pick up your award [Saturday]

Best wishes

The Tall Red Head said...

Sharon, I apologise for the wording of The Swear Word I used on Manuels blog. It was actually a typo and was meant to be F***ard..I am a single mum of three and work and don't get much sleep tend not to look at my typing as I write, very bad habit. I also tend to write Busty instead of Busy at times. Please don;t think I meant offence.

Sharon McDaid said...

Maddy we get used to doing what we want when we want. I like the holidays though as the children have their friends around all day instead of from 3pm on. Thanks very much for the award thing too!

Tall Red Head, I'm impressed that you took the time to visit and apologise, though no apology is needed. I wasn't trying to censor you (and I understand it was a typo anyway) but I have recently decided to say something when I see that term used on purpose. Most people would get annoyed at what I said so thanks for being so positive.

tracey (aka rainbowmummy) said...

Every right to be smug, smug it up baby!

I love the aba chips reward, I should give that a go, Egg can give name a chip every time I am not being crap, lol.

Go you for fighting "tard".

Casdok said...

Smug, fun and a workout! What more could you ask for!! :)