$40 for Four Half-Hour Kids’ Swim Classes at La Petite Baleen ($87 Value) 

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In a Nutshell

Weekly classes for kids of all ages designed to increase swimming skills as well as boost confidence, foster friendships, and overcome fears

The Fine Print

Expires 120 days after purchase. Limit 3 per person, may buy 2 additional as gift. Limit 1 Groupon per child/adult per set of classes. Valid only for location purchased. Appointment required, subject to availability. 24hr cancellation notice required. Must sign waiver. New students only, or those who have not been enrolled at La Petite Baleen in the past 6 months. Lessons must be redeemed in 4 consecutive weekly lessons. Merchant is solely responsible to purchasers for the care and quality of the advertised goods and services.

Activities for kids compensate for the downsides of growing up, such as doing homework and realizing that your original teeth are never coming back. Put a smile on a child's face with this Groupon.

$40 for Four Kids’ Swim Classes ($87 Value)

During one half-hour session each week kids learn the skills necessary to stay safe in the water. Children are placed in a group with youngsters of a similar age and skill set so that they won’t feel rushed, and a 4:1 student-teacher ratio ensures plenty of individual attention. Because La Petite Baleen offers so many classes—all day, seven days a week—parents should contact the school for specifics about class times and availability.

La Petite Baleen

After one look at the pristine pools packed with toys, and it’s no surprise why La Petite Baleen’s four San Francisco–area swim facilities are so popular with kids. What may be surprising, however, is that the flourishing network of schools started humbly in the backyard pool of John Kolbisen and Irene Madrid.

In 1979, the public school teachers were brainstorming ways to integrate their passion for educating kids with their love of the water. Starting with their own three children, some neighborhood kids, and their logo–Waverly the Whale, John and Irene began teaching swim lessons with a rather progressive philosophy: They approached swimming not just as an extracurricular activity, but as a means to boost self-confidence, build friendships, and learn to overcome fears.

More than 30 years later, La Petite Baleen has become a renowned family of schools, partnered with the U.S. Swim School Association and the Swim for Life Foundation. Part of the success has to do with how children are grouped. In weekly sessions, pods of tots of similar age, skill level, and personality evolve at a similar pace—earning individual achievement ribbons as they do. Kids make friends in the group, and the recurring scheduling means that they can stay enrolled with their new buddies indefinitely or until they grow their own dorsal fins. Each location’s indoor pools are kept at an inviting 90 degrees, in an attempt to make even the most timid student to feel comfortable in the water. Perhaps most importantly, the teachers participate in ongoing training designed to encourage empathetic, yet firm teaching methods.

Stuff that the kids will enjoy