Hands-on games and activities are not only great in the classroom, but are great for the pool as well. Texas Swim Academy believes that it’s important for young children who are new swimmers to build the confidence they need to conquer their fear of water and safely enjoy their time in the pool. Swimming games help a child do just that. Take a look at these water games that we believe will help teach basic water safety tips and help your children have fun at the same time.

Treasure Diving. Scatter diving rings or pool toys in the shallow end of the pool, where it’s just deep enough so that your child will have to briefly submerge to reach objects on the pool floor. Give them 10 seconds to gather as many “treasures” as they can, then have them try to beat their previous score. This teaches children to be comfortable under the water and to hold their breath.

Simon Says. Yes, this is the same game kids play on land, brought into the water. “Simon says, blow bubbles!” “Simon says, float on your back!” “Simon says, grab the side of the pool and kick your legs!” This allows you to practice a variety of water skills and new movements.

Red Light, Green Light. Also a playground favorite, call out “green light!”to allow your child to move toward you through the water, “red light!” to stop. Play in the shallow end, or use a swim noodle or kickboard. This is another one that teaches comfort in the water.

Teaching confidence in the water is a great way to prepare for swimming school or private swim lessons for kids. The most important thing to remember is let your child get comfortable in the water at their own pace, do not try to force the issue. Sooner or later, they will take to the water eagerly and confidently and their fear of water will fade way.