A Message from Sheri Taback

Junior Camp Aquatics Director

Welcome to the Junior Pool! SLDC is an authorized provider for the American Red Cross, and we therefore teach the American Red Cross Learn-to-Swim Program. Our three and four year olds learn how to swim with Preschool Aquatics Levels 1 to 3, and our five and six year olds are taught from the Learn-to Swim Levels 1 to 6. Many of the preschool skills are repeated, but are now done without assistance. The prerequisite for each level is the successful demonstration of skills from the preceding level, except for Level 1, which has no prerequisite. Each level also includes training in basic water safety and helping a swimmer in distress.

Our swim instructors work diligently with your child to make sure he or she is successful at the skills required at each level. We do not rush through levels. It is important to remember, no two children develop at the same rate. Each child learns at a different pace depending on factors such as physical growth, development, coordination, comfort, practice, and previous experience.

The key to our swim program is its emphasis on having fun! Enjoyment is essential to learning, especially for young children. Therefore, the kids engage in play oriented active learning with an emphasis on safety. Children learn aquatic skills through a variety of teaching methods including problem solving, exploration, discovery, and repetition. We have fun by using appropriate games and songs. We pride ourselves in keeping the classes small, with a ratio of two to four young swimmers per instructional group.

At SLDC, the junior campers use all of the pools for instruction, depending on the lesson and/or the day. The Dino pool is a fabulous teaching pool for every Junior Camper. At the deep end it is four feet and most Bears and Jewels can stand there. The swim instructors can stand comfortably which gives them the ease of assisting the campers, making it a great teaching venue. The width is approximately 15 yards, which is the required distance a Level 3 swimmer needs to achieve. Depending on the skill being taught, your child will also swim in the Big Pool, Junior pool, Lap pool, and the Plake. We only dive in the Plake because it is nine feet at its deepest, making it the only safe place to dive.

Four times a summer, your child will bring home a Swim Progress Report in his/her backpack. Look for these at the end of weeks 2, 4, 6 and 8. The swim instructors work very hard on these personalized reports and we want to make sure you are informed of your child’s progress. Please recognize your child’s efforts, no matter how small the accomplishment. Also note if your child is out of camp the week the progress reports are sent home, he or she will not receive a report until the next scheduled date.

Frequent practice is the key to adjustment and learning. Children can regress quickly if not allowed to practice. It is a good idea to encourage your child to participate in swim lessons every day. If your child can’t swim for any reason, please send me a note. Goggles are encouraged at swim instruction but nose clips are not permitted because they prohibit the proper breathing techniques. Encourage your child to show you the skills he or she is learning during swim instruction. Your interest and enthusiasm is a great motivator!

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at SLDC 973-831-9000, or send me a note with your child’s bus counselor. I look forward to swimming with your child this summer!

Sheri Taback
Junior Camp Aquatics Director