YMCA, elementary schools continue long partnership
Published 9:45 am Friday, June 5, 2015
This spring, the YMCA in Franklin continued its long tradition of hosting students from elementary schools across the region for its annual swim program.
Each year second- and fourth-grade students from S.P. Morton Elementary School and the elementary schools in Southampton County, respectively, travel to the Y to take swimming lessons.
“A lot of kids come to us with no experience,” said Becca McGrath, the sports program director at the Y. “They think that swimming is jumping up and down in the water.”
Shawn Denne, the physical education instructor at S.P. Morton, adds, “Some [students] have never been in a pool before. They benefit the most from the actual exposure to a swimming environment. There just aren’t many opportunities for Franklin city children to be exposed to that environment.”
Students are taught the basics of how to swim, while students with more background in swimming are taught more advanced skills, such as the butterfly stroke and even how to rescue drowning companions.
“Some kids come in and they don’t trust us,” McGrath said, “but as the week goes on they get more confident in themselves, and they know that we won’t let them drown.”
McGrath says that the most important thing that kids learn is to always swim in the presence of an adult.