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Aquatots Portland – Bay Club-Tigard

3 years

This program takes 3-year-olds in small groups (no more than 4 per instructor) and teaches them to be submerged under water, how to control their breath, and how to kick forward through the water. Classes are engaging, using imaginative daily themes.

Toddler Swimming Classes in Portland - Bay Club-Tigard

The Aquatots program in Tigard immerses your child in an enriching environment, using imaginative themes to instruct three-year-olds in breath control, submersion, and destination kicking.

The class size is kept small to ensure each child receives individual attention, with a ratio of one teacher to four students. This program is suitable for three-year-olds who are exploring water for the first time or who already have some swimming experience. Emler can guide a child who is new to the water to become a swimmer, or enhance your child’s existing abilities to reach the Aquatots level of proficiency.

Each class has a maximum of four students to each instructor, creating an intimate learning group. These children of similar age are guided in how to safely submerge and efficiently kick forward in the water.

Emler’s Way of Teaching

At Emler, we understand that children are always eager to play, learn, and grow. Our classes blend these essential elements of child development, ensuring each session is enjoyable, positive, and educationally valuable. Using games and different themes to teach, we create a non-competitive environment where each child’s progress is celebrated.

Our certified, highly experienced instructors gradually introduce the joys of swimming to your child. As children learn to hold their breath longer, roll over in the water, submerge underwater, and eventually move through the water independently, the learning journey becomes more exciting.

Classes at Emler are filled with laughter and enthusiasm as children naturally learn swimming skills. The relationship between teacher and student is one of total trust and support.

With our award-winning curriculum and over 48 years of teaching experience, Emler guarantees your child will learn to swim and be proficient in water.

For Parents

At Emler, parents are part of every class, offering their support from the comfortable viewing room or cheering on from the pool deck. Consult our guide on “Your Child’s First Swim Lesson” for helpful tips on what to expect the first day. We take pride in the Elmer Facilities at Tigard, which are meticulously designed and maintained for safety, cleanliness, and comfort for both our young swimmers and their parents.

Finding the Ideal Class for Your Toddler

At Emler, we believe it’s essential for young children to learn in an environment that suits their swim skills. This fosters confidence and provides an atmosphere of positive reinforcement.

Our age-specific programs have multiple progressive levels to accommodate children’s varied abilities, and we offer free assessments to place your child accurately in one of the many teaching levels.

Refer to the Emler guide “Finding the Right Class for Your Child.” The Aquatots toddler swim program has four levels to ensure your child is placed at the appropriate level for their abilities.

For children three years and older, we begin with a complimentary 10-minute one-on-one Swim Skills Evaluation with an instructor. The skilled instructor will assess your child’s abilities and assign them to the perfect class.

What Your Toddler Will Learn at Elmer in Tigard

Your toddler will learn water safety techniques that will last a lifetime. The lessons utilize songs and games, making them more fun.

The Waterbabies program has six levels that help place your toddler at the right level depending on their skills.

In early stages, parents join their child in the water. But as their skills progress, your toddler will be with a teacher while you watch from outside the pool.

As your toddler improves their skills, they will first gain confidence in the water and learn to submerge comfortably for 8-10 seconds.

As their skill set improves, your child will learn to kick through the water, first for up to 3 feet and, at higher skill levels, for up to 10 feet.

At our X-treme Waterbabies level, your toddler will learn rollover breathing, an essential water safety skill where they learn to roll into a back float to take a new breath.

Throughout the toddler swimming lessons, the distance will get longer, the classes more fun, and the smiles wider!

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Three year olds who cannot swim without flotation

These tots learn underwater breath control for 8-10 seconds! And they will learn to kick forward a distance of 5 feet through the water. They’ll have fun doing this, with daily games and to spark their enjoyment.

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Advanced Aquatots

Three year olds who kick five feet through the water

Kicking 5 feet is so yesterday – in the Advanced class now we learn to travel a distance of up to 12 feet! The games and themes continue to spark imagination AND the kids become familiar with the rollover breath.

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Super Aquatots

Three year olds who kick 12 feet through the water

Kicking progresses in the Super class up to a distance of 15 feet through the water, while completely mastering the rollover breath.

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X-treme Aquatots

Three year olds who kick 15 feet through the water

The group continues the fun and games as in this class the kids turn into true fishes – kicking a distance of 20 feet through the water while performing a rollover breath AND getting introduced to the all-important front breathing.

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Not sure what class/level is right for your child? Let us help!

Call to speak with one of our Emler team members looky here!Use the tool below to determine what class/level is right

class finder tool

Answer the questions below to determine what class/level is right for your child.

How old is your child?
2 – 5 months old
6 – 35 months old
3 years old
4+ years old
5+ years old
Child’s swimming experience

Can your child... (select 1)

Remain submerged and hold their breath for 8-10 seconds


Swim ___ without flotation

3 ft
5 ft
7 ft
10 ft
15-20 ft
20-30 ft

Swim ___ competitive strokes

Freestyle + Elementary Backstroke (40 ft)
Freestyle + Backstroke (80 ft)
Freestyle + Backstroke + Butterfly (80 ft)
Freestyle + Backstroke + Butterfly + Breaststroke (80 ft)

Bathtime Babies

Instruction on how to use bath time at home for socialization and bonding

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Learn 8 to 10 second breath control

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Move 3 feet through the water and Independent Lift

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Advanced Waterbabies

Move 5 feet through the water and Independent Jump & Exit

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Super Waterbabies

Kick 7 feet through the water and a sitting Jump, Turn & Swim

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X-treme Waterbabies

Kick 10 feet through the water, introduce rollover breathing and a standing Jump, Turn & Swim

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Themes and games are used to teach tots to kick 5 feet through the water and learn breath control

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Advanced Aquatots

Themes are used to teach tots to kick 12 feet through the water and start to get a rollover breath

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Super Aquatots

Kick 15 feet while getting a rollover breath

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X-treme Aquatots

Extend distance to 20 feet with a rollover breath, and introduce a front breath

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Swim 10 feet through the water

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Preschool Beginners

Kick 5-10 feet through the water

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Advanced Beginners

Swim 15-20 feet while improving independent front breath and introduce rollover breaths

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Super Beginners

Swim 20-30 feet while getting multiple independent front breaths and rolling breaths, treading water is introduced

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X-treme Beginners

Swim elementary backstroke 30-40 feet, swim freestyle with several independent rhythmic breaths 30-40 feet and treading water is mastered

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Swim freestyle 80 feet with unilateral and bilateral rhythmic breathing and swim competitive backstroke 80 feet

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Advanced Swimmers

Swim butterfly stroke 80 feet, master the freestyle and backstroke

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Super Swimmers

Swim breaststroke 80 feet, swim freestyle 80 feet with bilateral rhythmic breathing and backstroke

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X-treme Swimmers

Master endurance and the individual medley and learn swim team starts and finishes and introduce safety skills

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