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Kids Learning Plateaus

 
Often students learning a new motor skill, like swimming, experience a sudden lack of progress after a very strong start. This can be because of something called the 'learning plateau'. This term describes the way in which a period of rapid skill acquisition can be followed by a prolonged 'dry spell' during which no discernible progress is visible.
Often when kids are learning a new motor skill or sport such as swimming, they may start off strong then experience a sudden lack of progress or even stop altogether.

This can be because of something called the 'learning plateau'.

It’s quite common for kids to hit ‘learning plateaus’, so don’t be too alarmed when they suddenly seem to be uncooperative or resist doing an activity which they used to love.



Why do learning plateaus happen?


Learning plateaus are a natural part of life and can happen for all sorts of reasons.

Your kids might experience a learning plateau when they've been doing an activity for a long time, after a period of rapid learning or when they're beginning a new activity or learning experience.

After a period of learning, their brain needs time to make sense of all the new information and to reinforce the skills that they’ve learned.

Once their brain has processed the information, they'll be able to easily perform the new skills.

Plateaus can be short-lived or could last for many months.



What to do when kids hit a learning plateau


Kids learning plateaus are completely natural and a vital part of learning any new skill.

As parents it’s important to remain positive and patient during this time and bear in mind that this is only temporary.

Things you can try include:
 
  • Gently encouraging and allowing your kids to work at their own pace.
 
  • Continue with their regular lessons and let them practice or play independently outside of class time too.
 
  • Encourage them to practise the skills they’ve already acquired and work on the new ones they’re being taught.

By working through these plateaus you will then see the satisfaction of that flat line rising again. Perhaps to places that you would never have thought possible!

 

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Source: This article was written by Hilton Brown Swimming, New Zealand’s leading swim school.
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