Making Strides in The Pool

The Talmud teaches that parents are obligated to teach their children to swim (Kiddushin 29a). The swim staff at Ramah Boston have been privileged to help our families fulfill that obligation this summer. We offer instructional swim 4 days a week – and to a person, every camper has made great strides in their swimming ability this summer. 

Our kids are so proud of themselves when they accomplish skills that once eluded them. Just yesterday, I watched kids put their whole heads under water for the first time, swim farther distances than they’ve ever done before, and perfect their swim strokes. 

Shira, one of our swim teachers, and Noah, her student, had one such moment the other day. For the first time ever, he swam on his own. The pride and joy on his face was evident – so much so, that he wanted to take this picture to mark the occasion. 

Here’s what Shira had to say:

“Noah has been so fun to teach! When I first started teaching him, he would refuse to use fewer than two pool noodles but by the end of the day that we took this picture, he was down to zero! The first time he used just one, he told me he was scared, but Ella (another teacher) and I were certain he could do it. I started by taking one step away from him to build his confidence and eventually I took five steps away! He then told me he was ready for zero noodles. He was super brave and went for it. He was able to glide confidently to me and put his head under water by the time the whistle blew signaling the end of class! I know I’m proud of him and it’s clear he’s super proud of himself too! :)”

Noah’s story isn’t an outlier. Camper after camper leaves the pool feeling proud at what they’ve accomplished – both acquiring a new skill and knowing that their perseverance has paid off. Getting to watch these skills develop (and sometimes teach them too!) has been incredibly rewarding.