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For more reviews, see Swim Lessons for Preschool and School Aged Kids
I saw a post from a mom whose 4-year-old had a bad experience with another swim school, who needed a warmer and more supportive environment. I wanted to recommend Sherman Swim School in Lafayette to her. We have gone off and on (for older and younger child) for the past 5 years. The Sherman family has owned the school for the past 50 years, and Steve Sherman is usually on site and you can talk to him easily. Parents can sit on the deck at picnic tables or in comfy deck chairs. The instructors are friendly, skilled at teaching, and work hard during every lesson. But, they do not offer group lessons, and private swim lessons are expensive. www.shermanswim.com anon
Re: Swimming for almost 2 year old
You're lucky -- Sherman Swim, which is in Lafayette where you live, is the perfect place -- shallow warm pools, excellent instructors. We have gone there (over the hill from Oakland) for about 4 summers, with my now 7-year-old, and last year my just-turned-3 year old started. She is asking when summer is coming so she can swim again (they do have spring classes, we just only swim in the summer) They have a web site you can google. They are not inexpensive, however, although it is a great experience. anon
I would appreciate up-to-date feedback about the Sherman Swim School in Lafayette. Our 5 year-old loves the water when she is in the pool with us and wears her floaties. But she had a negative first experience with swim lessons last summer at Mills. We would like her to take private lessons with an experienced instructor who is gentle yet firm and can work with our daughter about overcoming her fear of putting her head in the water. Thanks! Swim Mom-To-Be
I am interested in hearing reviews of Harriet Plummer Aquatic School and Sherman Swim School. I have checked the archives, but I am particularly keen on hearing the two programs compared and contrasted if anyone is familiar with both. The ''FAQs'' on the Harriet Plummer website sounded as though they employ a bit of a ''tough love'' approach, but I don't know if that is actually the case. My non-swimming yet water-loving son is almost 5 and can be tentative in new situations. So, I just want to be sure he is as comfortable as possible so that his associations with swimming are positive. Thanks.
with that in mind, your depiction of harrient plummer as the ''tough love'' approach is consistent with my experience. my oldest child went to one lesson there, actually one-half of a lesson there, before i pulled him out 7 years ago. i was not comfortable watching my child(ren) cry when being introduced to the water -- and was not comfortable with the philosphy of HP.
sherman, by contrast, is much softer and gentler. they try to work with children's innate water fears and support them. my children all went to sherman and while it may have taken a bit longer to learn to swim than at the HP sink or swim school, they never felt abandon or cried.
now many years later, they are little fish - loving water and having fun, safe and secure. i would not recommend the HP method unless 1) you have a strong constitution and do not have a problem with making your child cry (at least for the short term) or 2) you have a child who is VERY EAGER to put their face in the water and take off (in which case you may not need lessons!) bekki
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