My wish for the class of 2013.

How would you feel,
if you just finished a nights work,
organising the teaching of almost ninety children to swim?
Wrecked, tired, irritable, weary?

Well actually no that is not how I feel.
I feel, young, invigorated, happy, buzzing.

As I opened the doors to the pool tonight,
a stream of children poured out.
Among them were the seasoned older children,photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/pinksherbet/4624257536/">Pink Sherbet Photography</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">cc</a>
shouting, smiling and waving,
delighted to be back after the Summer break.
The eight and nine year olds,
who a few short years ago,
were the shy, quiet anxious beginners.

Then towards the back they came.
The five year olds,
all decked out in hat and goggles,
fingers in mouths,
and hands clutching their parents.
Many of the parents too,
I must say appeared to share their anxiety.

In the water waiting to welcome them,
were the older club swimmers.
Now fifteen and sixteen years old.
Some still swimming competitively,
others swimming just once a week.

As I watched them,
interact with these tiny tots,photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/casademora/164874009/">saulmora</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/">cc</a>
managing to engage those who were shy,
and holding as lovingly as parents,
those who were overwhelmed, or fearful,
I felt so proud to be part of this group.

I was watching a complete circle.
Beginners, improvers and proficient swimmers.
A percentage of the beginners tonight,
will go on to swim at a high level.
However the majority will go on to just swim.

I think back tonight,
to my own rocky time learning to swim.
I can still remember the fear,
the tears and the tantrums,
until eventually my mother in exasperation,
told me she would “never again bring me swimming”.
The happiest day in my young life.

A few years later I chose to return.
There I met a lady called Louise,
who changed everything.
For she not only taught me to swim,
but to love to swim.

Over the years,
I will teach most of these ninety children at some stage.
They will learn all the strokes,
until eventually they are proficient.
“The best they can be”.
However that is not my main goal.
My main goal will be,
with the help of all the club,photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/mfahad/6111292719/">m_fahad</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/">cc</a>
to foster in each child,
the ability to swim,
and the love of swimming.

For if I can teach them that,
I will have been a successful teacher.
They may go on to swim competitively,
or just for leisure,
but whatever their swimming ability,
in many many years time,
when my own teaching days are over,
my wish is that they will still be swimming.
Loving what was first began,
on a September night aged five years.

photo credit: Pink Sherbet Photography via photopin cc
photo credit: saulmora via photopin cc
photo credit: m_fahad via photopin cc


17 thoughts on “My wish for the class of 2013.

  1. I always think that it is great to be a teacher of anything that involves kids, it is life changing in many ways for the person being taught, and for the teacher you have this opportunity to leave this person with a lifelong love of swimming, and like you said whether it is just a leisure activity or a future Olympic gold medallist, the possibilities are endless.

    1. Yes to be a teacher of anything is a privilege. I am sure you and all of us can pick out a teacher who stood out. The level of talent is irrelevant although I am confident I will in the next few years start a young olympian. They will look no different to the others at five years but in time hopefully they can blossom.:)

  2. How I wish I’d had a swimming teacher like you! I never had anyone patient enough to teach me how to really swim, and can do the bare minimum, but without breathing right. So it’s never been fun for me and it’s so wonderful that you share your love with these children! What a great gift.

    1. Thank you. Doing a job you love is never hard! I have heard a lot of stories such as yours. I think in our set up I am lucky to have teachers as passionate as myself, so hopefully they will all learn.

  3. this is beautiful tric and how lucky you are to get to see all the stages and circles you are creating. i wish i had a swim teacher like you, i may have actually learned how to swim )

Comments are always welcome.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s