Welcome to our Learn to Swim Scheme

The Online Swim Hub is live!

Our swimmers take a journey through aquatics and develop a wide range of skills. From their first splashes right through to becoming a Tees Active Complete Swimmer, swimmers will follow the ASA’s learn to swim pathway and acquire the fundamental knowledge to support a life-long achievement in swimming.


What is the Learn To Swim Scheme?

The Learn to Swim Scheme is Tees Active’s Swimming lesson provision. Lessons are available across our three centres at various times throughout the week with each lesson lasting between 30 – 45 minutes.

Your child will receive a Learn to Swim starter pack which includes the parents guide, vouchers for our other facilities, an activity sheet and more!


Continuous Assessment Programme

-We understand that every swimmer is an individual; our continuous assessment programme means that swimmers will progress through the programme at their own pace. There are no set enrolment or re-enrolment periods.

-Coaches have the ability to report on the swimmers progress via the use of a portable device on poolside, providing up to date, real time assessments on the swimmers development against the pre set criteria.

-You will have the ability to view the swimmers progress online through weekly reports by registering to the new free online ‘Swim Hub’ service.


Fun Approach

Why a fun approach to learning is so important.

A question often asked about swimming lessons is “Why is my child just playing games? They aren’t learning.”

A fun approach to learning is so important for children and adults alike, whether for swimming lessons or for any other learning opportunity.

Learning through fun and games

The easiest way for a child to acquire the skills needed to be a confident swimmer is through fun and games.

Games are an ideal way for children to develop their jigsaw of skills and may even lead to them learning how to combine one skill with another, without even realising.

The Swim England Learn to Swim Programme takes this approach to learning to swim, giving swimmers the core skills needed to become competent swimmers.

Each skill counts

At each stage of the programme, all of the skills learned are crucial and must be achieved easily and without stress.

For example, if the swimmer does not accomplish a skill such as aquatic breathing, the achievement of skills such as rotation, streamlining, travel, buoyancy and balance will become difficult to perform effectively.

9 core skills of swimming

The core skills of swimming are the basic skills your child needs to keep afloat in water and to get ready to start swimming

  1. Entry
  2. Exits
  3. Buoyancy and Balance
  4. Rotation and Orientation
  5. Streamlining
  6. Aquatic Breathing
  7. Travel and Coordination
  8. Water Safety
  9. Health and Fitness

Through the journey of acquiring these skills, water competence will develop. Through competence in water, the child will have more fun, will be more likely to be active, follow a healthy lifestyle and participate in sport throughout his or her lifetime.

This process ultimately results in a child being able to swim different strokes, such as front crawl, breaststroke, backstroke and butterfly, as well as learning skills that may become transferable to another water-based or land-based sport.

Discovery Duckling Awards

These Swim England Pre-School Framework Awards are perfect for babies from birth (subject to Health Visitor advice being followed). They are also perfect for pre-school children who are new to swimming.

Usually parents or carers will attend swimming lessons with their babies or young children and join them in the water. This helps to provide reassurance for the child and gives the parent or carer confidence in assisting their child in the water.

Four separate Awards are available which begin with an introduction to the water and swimming environment through fun and games.

Duckling Awards

These Swim England Pre-School Framework Awards are a natural follow on from the Discovery Duckling Awards. They are aimed at children who are old enough to follow instructions and can move on their own.

They give the child more independence and start to build their confidence in water. These Awards are used to slowly build up the child ready for the Learn to Swim Framework Stages 1-7.



The Duckling awards are designed to help swimmers from the age of 3 explore and enjoy the fun of learning to swim whilst boosting confidence in and out of the water.

Developing basic safety awareness, introduction to the ‘class’ scenario, basic movement skills and water confidence skills.

Developing safe entries to water, including jumping in, basic floating, travelling and unaided rotation to regain upright positions.

Developing safe entries including submersion, travel up to 10 metres on the front and back, progress rotation skills and water safety knowledge.

Developing the understanding of buoyancy through a range of skills, refining kicking technique for all strokes and swimming 10 metres to a given standard as directed by Swim England.


Developing watermanship through sculling and treading water skills, complete rotation and also performing all strokes to the given standard as directed by Swim England.

Developing effective swimming skills including co-ordinated breathing, developing the water safety aspects and understanding of preparation for exercise.

Developing quality stroke technique up to 100 metres, incorporating skills learnt and combining them to develop a linked routine and complete successfully an obstacle course that combines a variety of skills accomplished throughout Stages 1 – 7.


After swimmers have completed Stages 1 – 7 of our learn-to-swim scheme, they can continue on our scheme by completing the Swimming Challenge awards. The Bronze, Silver, Gold and Honours award challenges swimmers to develop a wide range of skills and stamina with a focus on good stroke style.


Tees Active recognises the achievement of all swimmers who complete all 7 stages and then continue to achieve all Swimming Challenge awards. Swimmers are awarded with a commemorative certificate and medal to mark their achievement.

Parents Guide (click to download)

Celebrating milestones

The Swim England Awards celebrate swimming milestones for the children as they achieve a specific skill, distance or complete a Learn to Swim Stage Award.

This adds the star dust for the child – we all enjoy getting recognition for our achievements!

The time it takes for a swimmer to develop the crucial skills and build their jigsaw of skills will depend on their own personal development, as swimmers progress at their own pace.

Parents and swimming teachers play a key role in keeping them motivated by ensuring that they continue to enjoy being in the water and learning to swim.


Swim Hub

Swim Hub is the new free online hub that enables you to:

–  Track the swimmers progress throughout their time on the learn to swim scheme

–  Purchase credits for lessons from the comfort of your home.

–  Receive alerts informing you of when the swimmer has achieved an award and is ready to progress to the next stage.

–  Select a day and time for your lessons that suits you.

–  To register for this free service, simply click on the link at the top of the page and register your details.

Preparing For Lessons

Preparing children for swimming lessons on their first dip is a great idea. Young children can often be a bit nervous about starting something new.

The thought of meeting new people or being in a new place is not always easy. For parents, even more so for new parents, this might feel like a daunting experience too.

The checklist below will help in preparing children for swimming. It can help to ensure that both you and your child are ready to get down to the pool and into the first lesson feeling confident and fully prepared.

  1. Help your child get used to being in water. The best way of doing this is in the bath. Sing songs that they know and play games with floating toys which will help to put them at ease and make the idea of being in water fun.
  2. When you go to choose a swimming costume, let your child help you pick for them. Tell them why they will be wearing it and get them to try it on with a swim nappy (if needed). You could even do this in the bath so they get used to the feeling of the costume when it is wet. It may seem a small thing but it helps
  3. Take your child down to the pool before the first lesson. Take them around and play some games, I spy is a good choice. This lets them get used to a new place so they are not shocked when their first lesson comes around.
  4. If you can, meet with the swimming teacher so your child will remember them at the first lesson. This might not always be possible, but some pools do offer this to help new or nervous swimmers.
  5. Go for a family fun session or two down at the pool. This is great for getting them used to being in the water with other people around.
  6. Double check the date and time well in advance. You want to give yourself a little extra time to get to the pool and get changed. Being rushed will only get you and your child flustered.
  7. Make sure you let the pool know about any medical conditions, injuries or special needs your child might have before the lesson.
  8. Make sure your child has had something to eat in advance of their lesson, but don’t give them a huge meal. Just a light snack to help maintain energy levels. Some dried fruit or nuts is a good choice.

Develop Water Confidence

Parents can play an active role in increasing water confidence in babies and young children from an early age.

Although it’s not essential to take your child to a swimming pool, bath time activities can be a good introduction to the water.

Four activities to help build your child’s water confidence

Underwater humming

If you or your children sing into hairbrushes or wave around air guitars then why not try a little underwater humming.

  • Divide into pairs or small groups and stand close to each other
  • Now all duck under the water.
  • While submerged, one person from the group or pair starts humming a favourite tune and the others have to guess the tune.

How many turns will it take them to name that tune? If they haven’t guessed it after three turns, tell them what it is and then swap. Ensure you have a good collection of humming tunes ready before you start playing.

Fishy in the middle

This game is a watery version of piggy in the middle and will get everyone jumping around.

Take with you a medium-sized soft/inflatable ball for each group of three players. Always check with the pool staff that you are ok to use these. Some pools run family splash session where they will supply balls.

  • Get into threes, with one person standing in the middle.
  • The fishy in the middle has to try and catch the ball as the others throw it over his or her head.

How high can your child jump out of the water? When the fishy catches the ball the person who threw it takes a turn in the middle.

Starfish tag

Starfish Tag is derived from another classic playground game. It is loads of fun in the pool and good at helping build water confidence.

  • One of you is the ‘tagger’ and has to try and tag all the others in the water.
  • Once someone is tagged that person has to stand still until they are set free.
  • Tagged swimmers can only be set free if someone else taps them on the shoulder or swims under their arms or legs.

Try setting a time limit to the game and see who can win the most tags.

Swimming through legs

This is a fun game and good for developing swimming and water confidence under the water.

  • Start by standing in a star shape with someone else facing you.
  • The person opposite then has to try and swim through your legs under the water.
  • Make sure you open them wide enough. Once they do it you swap over.

If you find this a bit easy, try getting two people standing with their legs open and try to swim through both in one go.

Dinky Ducks

Dinky Ducks is our parent and toddler water confidence course for toddlers aged 18 months to 3 years old and is the perfect way to prepare them for swimming lessons!

They are 30 minute lessons once a week for 6 weeks.


Non-member – £57.60
Option 1 – £45.00
Option 2 – £45.00
Option 3 – £32.40

Prices valid till the 31st March 2019.

Next Course

Every Tuesday 15:00 – 15:30 from the 4th June till the 9th July 2019.

We also have taster sessions running on Wednesday 10th & 17th April, 15:00 – 15:30

To book visit Stockton Splash reception or call on 01642 660610.

We also have a range of Crash Courses this Easter. See Below for more details:



Although it’s not essential to take your child to a swimming pool, bath time activities are a can be a good introduction to the water.




Payment Details

From October 2016, we will be changing the way the learn to Swim Scheme is currently managed and introducing an easy way of taking payment. The new process has a number of added benefits:

–  Swimmers will undertake a programme of continual assessment against the criteria set out within the Amateur Swimming Associations National Plan for Teaching. This means that at any point you can join or progress through the scheme

–  There will no longer be enrollment weeks. You will be required to purchase a minimum of 10 credits or lessons in advance and will need to ‘top up’ your credits when you run low to continue on the scheme.

–  As your credits start to run low, you will receive automated emails reminding you to purchase additional credits by using the swim hub service from your computer or smartphone or from the venue reception.


How much does it cost?
Lessons are available to purchase in blocks of 10 (weeks)

Pricing is as follows:

Standard price – £64.00

Tees Active Leisure Card Holder (Option 1) – £50.00

Tees Active Leisure Card Holder (Option 2) – £50.00

Tees Active Leisure Card Holder (Option 3) – £36.00

For further information on Tees Active’s Leisure card, please click here.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I enrol onto the scheme?
Initially you will be required to visit or email the venue to check the availability and book your place onto the scheme. If a place cannot be found immediately, names can be placed on the Learn to Swim enquiry form and contact will be made as soon as a place is available.

How much does it cost?
Lessons are available to purchase in blocks of 10 (weeks)

Pricing is as follows:

Standard price – £64.00

Tees Active Leisure Card Holder (Option 1) – £50.00

Tees Active Leisure Card Holder (Option 2) – £50.00

Tees Active Leisure Card Holder (Option 3) – £36.00

For further information on Tees Active’s Lesiure card, please click here.

Where can I learn to swim?
You can learn to swim at Stockton Splash , Billingham Forum and Thornaby Pool. The times you desire may mean you are enrolled at any of these venues.

How do I make payment?
Initially you will be required to visit the venue to book your place on to the scheme. From then on you can buy credits through the online ‘swim hub’ and make payments quickly and easily. Alternatively, you can visit the venues reception to make payment. You will also be notified via email when your credits are running low.

How do I track my child’s progress?
Each swimmer will learn at their own pace and we appreciate that some will be ready to progress to the next stage of the scheme earlier than others. You can track your child’s progress against each aspect of the criteria needed to progress when you log in online to the free swim hub. This will give you an insight into the areas that require more attention allowing you to practice in your own time and progress quicker.

How do I re-enrol when the stage is complete?
The learn to swim scheme is based on a programme of continuous assessment. As soon as the swimmer is ready to progress to the next stage you will automatically receive an email alert. You can then log in, check availability and book into an available slot.

How long do lessons last?
All lessons are 30-45 minutes depending on which stage they are at on the scheme.

What if my child has behavioural/medical issues?
We ask that you communicate any issues with the venues reception team at your earliest convenience and this information will be passed onto your coach.

What happens if I cannot attend a lesson?
Unfortunately we cannot refund or credit lessons for the occasional missed lessons. However, we do have a refund policy where by the swimmer is unable to attend their lessons over a sustained period due to a medical condition. Details of the learn to swim refund policy are available upon request.

How will your child learn?
Our Learn to swim Scheme is 100% practical based and all our coaches are level 2 qualified and trained to help and motivate the swimmer to improve their technique and confidence in the water.

How do I access the free online swim hub?
Simply click on the swim hub link on the Learn to Swim homepage, register your details using your email address and card number and complete your registration.

How quickly will the swimmers progress be updated on the online swim hub?
Any progress made by the swimmers will be updated within 24hrs of the end of that day’s lesson.

I have followed the link on the website to register for swim hub but it says my details can’t be found?
To enable you to register for swim hub your personnel details on our system need to be correct. Please contact the Reception team and they will be happy to update your details for you.

How should I prepare for my child’s first swimming lesson?

Starting swimming lessons is a big step for many children (and often for those taking them!).

Even if you are a pool regular yourself, it’s not always obvious what to bring for your child’s first swimming lesson.

So we thought we’d help out by highlighting some steps to take beforehand and what to bring to the first session.

Before the lesson

We strongly recommend you familiarise your child with the local pool and swimming pool environment. Family trips swimming are the perfect way to do this, as well as a fun day out!

It may also be worthwhile checking what their dress code is for lessons and whether you need to take anything extra.

The lesson itself

It’s a nice idea to involve your child in what they need for their swimming lesson so they know what to expect when they get to the pool. Use our checklist below to make sure you have all the essentials.

First Swimming Lesson Checklist

Here is our list of things to think of when taking your child for their first swimming lesson.

  • Swimming costume/trunks/shorts (for both yourself and your child if appropriate)
  • Towels
  • Shampoo/shower gel
  • Hair clips/hair bands (if needed)
  • Swimming cap/hat (if needed)
  • Locker money
  • Goggles

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