Pool Rules? For your own kids & their friends?

glitter_and_gunsMay 12, 2013

This will be our first year with a pool in a town with no public pool, no swim club pool, no country club pool. We are just about to become the most popular people that we know!

I have a 13 year old and an 11 year old, and before swim season really hits, I need to develop a set of pool rules. At this time I won't let either of them on the pool deck unless someone else is outside with them (right after we filled the pool the 11 year old took a header into the water trying to rescue a bug - she was fine, but it was an eye opener).

So what are your rules for your own kids? Do you let them in the water without an actual adult outside? Only in the shallow end? Never in the pool without an adult poolside? I can see out to the pool easily from inside the house, but I am not sure about letting them outside in the water alone even though I am comfy with both of their swim skills.

And, the bigger question - how do you handle their friends? Obviously I would never let other kids in the pool unless I was sitting at the pool. But what are your rules for friends swimming? Note that OKs it from parents? Do you make the parents come over and watch the kids?

And, the best one, how do you handle the neighbor kids just showing up with towels in hand (or maybe just suits on)? This is our first time living in a neighborhood with kids, and several kids here go to school with my kids, but are not my kids friends. People here know that this house has a pool (first thing I did was privacy fence it), and several times already I have had random kids come up to me in the front lawn and ask what days they can swim. Kids who I have never met.

I have had several adult acquaintances who have already asked when we are going to start hosting pool parties, so I know that word has spread. I am guessing if I have one big party maybe everyone will have been over and will have been in the pool and then I can be done with the question? Or does it just lead to "when is your next party"?

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When we built our pool it was mainly because of our grandchildren. Upfront, I shared that I would not be a pool 'baby sitter'. If my nieces and nephew's children wanted to come one of the parents have to bring them and stay with them.....they are free to use the pool anytime that way. As the children have gotten older age 12, they think the kids are old enough to come by themselves but I have cont. to say an adult must be with them.
I would not open up the pool to people I do not even know. They would have to be friends with my family and come with that family member. I feel if you open it up to all, you will never have any peace.
Other rules I have.....no horse-play, no running around the pool, no ducking others, no jumping onto a float. Clean up after yourself! (These are my rules. When I am not here, if the parents allow their children to do any of above then the responsibility is theirs. They know my rules.) If I find they are allowing them to jump onto a float and I see it I correct that immediately....to much danger of hitting head on cement side I think.)
Start out like you can hold out! Easier to relax rules than to tighten them.

    Bookmark   May 12, 2013 at 10:34PM
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Thank you! I figure it will be easier to be a little too strict at the beginning and lower my rules a bit - if I start them too low I will never get it fixed.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2013 at 9:57AM
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I have the same rules as memama. Also, no shooting water guns in faces. Some of those 'blasters' are powerful and I think could do some damage if forcefully sprayed in an eye.

I hang a green bandana on my fence when the pool is open to the neighborhood kids. If the bandana isn't there, don't come over. LOL But yeah, no strangers allowed. Ever.

I relaxed the rule about the kids having to bring a parent with them because for the most part, I don't mind sitting out there and I like to read, surf the web or talk on the phone and I don't want to entertain a parent.

Also, I got a whistle. Kids get loud a lot. I spent the first summer killing my vocal cords telling them to respect the neighbors. Over and over again. Now, instead of yelling at them to pipe down, I give the whistle a short, quiet blast and they know that they're either too loud or rough housing and to knock it off.

Obviously no glass containers. I don't care if my uncle flies in from Germany with the best bottled beer in the world. It goes in a plastic cup or a plastic pitcher.

Sorry Uncle Otto.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2013 at 5:04PM
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