Kingfishers Mentee Programme
What is it all about ?….
As a committee we have had questions regarding the mentee programme and how it works.
Well… the young adults who are mentee’s to your children are all experienced swimmers. They have dedicated years to the sport, competing, training and supporting peers, they have shown great passion for the sport of swimming. As a club we are fully inclusive and endeavour to support our (ex) swimmers in the routes they choose to follow, this is why the mentee programme was put in place, to support those wanting to follow the teaching/coaching pathway. Since the loss of the Learn to swim programme we have met some challenges, and the mentee programme has allowed us to support your children further, especially between 6-8pm on a Wednesday.
The mentees arrive early to meet with the coaches, they run through the set with them. The coaches are clear in the expectations of them and what they should expect from the swimmers. The mentees are then given time to ask any questions before the younger children arrive. There is always a coach watching each lane and the mentees are never left alone, they have access to a coach if they have questions or concerns. The coaches will intervene if there are any issues, this could be anything, the mentee’s may need more guidance, the swimmers in the lane may not be listening or not taking the mentee seriously, who at this point are their coaches. The coaches will always deal with any discipline issue. The coaches are in constant communication with the mentees, checking that all is ok, if something is spotted the coach will ask the mentee if they saw it and guide them in how to correct it. All of the mentees have swam, they have trained just as hard as the young swimmers are. They have all made mistakes with their swimming, they know how hard training can be at times. They all have a favourite stroke and a weak one, so who is best in relating to your child, sometime when a child is struggling looking up to someone closer in age is often the support they need. Communicating to them on a different level will aid understanding of the task at hand and the mentees support the swimmers with swimming jargon so as they move up the lanes they understand what the coach/teacher is asking them to do.
This programme is to support all, it encourages young swimmers, it supports older swimmer giving them more experience and confidence and it supports our couching team, who work hard, giving up their free time to train your children in a sport that we all love.
Many of the mentees are level 1 or 2 teachers, or are booked on to teaching courses this year. The ones that are under 16 will be looking at teaching courses once they have finished their GCSE’s. We are trying to nurture them and encourage them, as these individuals, are the next wave of volunteers, teachers and coaches. Without these, clubs like ours would cease to exist.