Julie's Swim School
Awards Scheme
The following gives an overview of our Awards Scheme. We aim to provide small friendly FUN classes to encourage all round development however, all children develop at their own pace and our swimming teachers try to space out the awards so that children generally do not receive several awards at once and then have a long gap until the next one as this can adversely affect their motivation. This may mean that not all children will receive the same badge at the same time. Also we work on a continual assessment basis so your child will pass a badge when they are ready not just at the end of term.  Please be assured that we have your child's best interests at heart at all times and speak to your child's swimming teacher or Julie Simonelli if you have any questions.
Duckling Awards: Ducklings 1-5 are a series of awards for our younger swimmers (age 3-4) and cover early water confidence skills.  
ASA Learn to Swim Pathway
Our core Awards Scheme is Stages 1-7 of the ASA Learn to Swim pathway. It is a national syllabus for Aquatics which takes the swimmer from a beginner through to a competent, confident and safe swimmer who has the skill base for then developing technique in a wide range of water based sports. Below is a brief overview of the stages:
Stage 1: Developing basic safety awareness, the ‘class’ scenario, basic movement skills. Swimmers may use floatation aids.
Stage 2: Developing safe entries into the water, including jumping in, basic floating, travel and rotation unaided to regain upright positions. Swimmers may use flotation aids.
Stage 3: Developing safe entries including submersion, travel up to 10 metres on the front and back, progress rotation skills and water safety knowledge.
Stage 4: Developing the understanding of buoyancy through a range of skills, refining kicking technique and swimming 10 metres for all 4 strokes to a given standard as directed by the ASA.
Stage 5:  Developing ‘watermanship’ through sculling and treading water skills, and complete rotation, also performing all strokes to the given standard as directed by the ASA.
Stage 6: Developing effective swimming skills including co-ordinated breathing, developing the water safety aspects and understanding preparation for exercise.
Stage 7: Developing quality stroke technique up to 100 metres, incorporating skills learned and combining them to develop a linked routine and complete successfully an obstacle course that combines a variety of skills accomplished throughout stages 1-7.
To progress through each stage, pupils must perform each of the criteria consistently to a high standard. Equal emphasis is given to all 4 strokes, so this includes butterfly. These stages are therefore not easy or quick to pass through and each child will do this at their own pace. Some children will struggle in certain areas, for example breaststroke leg kick or butterfly full stroke. Your child’s teacher may therefore decide to pass your child for an alternative water skills award as it is recognised that awards help to keep pupils motivated with their swimming.
Water Skills Awards:  These are a set of complimentary awards with different emphasis. Pupils have to attempt 10 skills but only pass in 8 and they are therefore easier to obtain.
Distance Awards: Pupils will also work towards distance awards. Starting at 5 metres, this first award is given for covering the distance.  For the following awards stroke criteria are applied and as the distance becomes longer the expected stroke standard becomes higher. Please note that your child maybe able to swim a length of the pool but they will not be awarded their 25 metre badge until they can perform it consistently on their front and back to the expected stroke standards.
Challenge Awards: These are a set of awards for the more competent swimmers. They combine distance and skills criteria.  Pupils will work towards their Bronze, Silver and Gold Challenge once they have passed their 400 metres.
Personal Survival: These awards are covered every year in the summer term. All pupils, whatever their ability will take part in some personal survival swimming. Those achieving the necessary criteria will achieve their Personal Survival Level 1 or Level 2 award.
Water Safety: All our lessons encompass water safety awareness. Every year we read new stories about people of all ages who have underestimated the dangers of open water and have drowned. We  believe with teaching children to swim, comes the responsibility to also teach them of the dangers water can present. We recommend that this is a subject which families learn about together. Please visit the website http://www.drowningpreventionweek.org.uk/ and ensure your family knows the SAFE Code! From September 2013 all younger swimmers will practice to receive their Preliminary Water Safety award.
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