The Swim Centre's Evolution ... Swimming Lessons from the UK to the North Shore
"My husband Paul and I started the school on the North Shore of Auckland in 1978 a short time after arriving from the UK where I qualified with the ISTA (International Swimming Teacher Assoc), the ASA (Amateur Swimming Assoc) and Royal Lifesaving Society. The foundation of my love for teaching was the time I spent with the UK education department as a dedicated swimming tutor. While this was satisfying the number of pupils in a class made it impossible to give the personal attention required to 'teach swimming correctly' so the idea of creating a swim school designed specifically to teach young children was born and the decision to come to Auckland and New Zealand followed.
From the beginning, The Swim Centre’s facilities have been designed for teaching young children swimming. Development has occured in stages, since 1978, and now 40 years on The Swim Centre is a landmark set in 4 private acres on Upper Harbour Drive, Albany."
Anne Scanlon - Founder and Principal Teacher
Ideal Facilities for Children's Swimming Lessons
The Swim Centre's facilities have been deliberately designed to create a friendly and fun, safe place where children look forward to visiting. We suspect children think more about coming to see the pet pig & chickens in our mini farm, playing in the playground, getting a small reward and drink after swimming lessons, watching a DVD while waiting for their swimming lessons to start or when mum is having an espresso, more than learning to swim.
However our motive is simple, making swimming lessons a positive experience … and in doing so creating the conditions that enable us to succeed in teaching swimming and water safety.
Learn to Swim to Survive
The Swim Centre's swimming lessons focus on teaching children to Swim to Survive.
We have long understood that a parent’s first priority is that we prepare their children to swim to survive if the unexpected occurs. That's why we describe the overall focus of our swimming lessons as … teaching under and over fives to swim to survive.
This is achieved by starting with the basic front and back paddle strokes, which quickly leads to learning freestyle, breaststroke, backstroke, butterfly and personal survival techniques. Many pupils continue to develop beyond swimming lessons and become strong swimmers competing for their school and surf lifesaving clubs.
Our other key objective is that our pupils are confident swimming ‘out of their own depth’ as this is an effective test of their ability and confidence to deal with the real world where water is seldom shallow. Our approach develops intuitive swimming skills and a real understanding of what to do if the unexpected occurs, which is in the first place is to be careful then if the unexpected occurs not to panic, instead be calm and confident.
"Our approach develops skills remembered for life." Anne Scanlon - Founder and Principal Teacher