by Rob Cox May 02, 2014
Have a Pre-Season Pool Safety Meeting
May is National Water Safety Month, and we dedicate our first post of May to the cause of your children's and grandchildren's safety, not to mention the safety of visiting kids or neighbor kids.
There are many ways to secure your pool physically, with barriers like covers and fencing, and high tech alarms and lighting - but there is another powerful Layer of Protection that is underused - pool safety training.
Pool safety awareness is not something that comes naturally to children, or even adults. Over winter, we become complacent about pool safety, but now that spring is here, pool safety must be top of mind. During the next 4 months, over 300 children will drown in our nation's pools and spas.
Now is the time to have a Pool Safety Meeting, for everyone in the household, plus any other extended family or friends that will come to use the pool this summer.
Make it Fun!
Plan to serve some light refreshments, or dessert and a summertime beverage. You could try out some of these 77 pool party themed recipes, or even bake a pool cake.
Make it Informative!
- Have an Agenda: Print out a copy of the meeting agenda, listing the major topics of discussion, such as:
- Pool Safety Awareness
- Pool Safety Videos
- Pool Safety Rules
- Assign Accountability
- Swim Lesson Plans
- Close meeting
- Show Videos: On a laptop or tablet big enough so everyone can see and hear. Choose a few age appropriate videos to show, such as:
- Have Handouts: The more visual aids you use, the more effective the learning. Display or handout printed information, such as:
- Swim Lessons: For those who don't know how to swim, or anyone under the age of 14:
- Evaluate their level at the end of last year (guppy, dolphin, shark).
- Set goals for this year for swimming and diving skills.
- Make a plan for progressive swim lessons early in the season.
- Encourage better swimming skills as a means to pool safety.
- Assign Accountability: Everyone in the home should take responsibility for pool safety practices. Everyone should be held accountable for the actions of others, esp. friends that come over to swim. Give the responsibility to teach others how to swim safely. If the collective household pool safety awareness is raised, and everyone is accountable - suddenly gates and doors aren't left open, and even that wild child next door will behave himself in the pool.
Make it Fun!
I know I already said that, but all this talk about emergency procedures, swim lessons and accountability just may put a damper on the meeting, so keep it light and stress the importance of pool safety without hitting them over the head - too much.
Plan your spring pool safety meeting now - while the season is still new. Try to meet before the first swim of the year, and if need be, review the information with your family in a few months, in a Summer Safety Summit!