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"Junior" classmate without parent/family member

Discussion in 'New Divers and Those Considering Diving' started by mikkilj, Jul 12, 2004.

  1. MtnDiver

    MtnDiver Barracuda

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Colorado Springs, CO
    I would just take the instructor aside and say that you don't feel that you are able to concentrate on learning when paired with the child due to having to help her during the class and you feel being paired with an adult would enable you to concentrate on your classwork more.
  2. The Kraken

    The Kraken He Who Glows in the Dark Waters (ADVISOR) ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Roswell/Alpharetta, GA
    MechDiver wrote:
    "What has that got to do with the thread? Geez."

    DandyDon wrote:
    "Don't see how that has anything to do with the lady's question...?"

    I asked the question because it suited me to do so, that's what it has to do with the lady's question.

    But, as the lady stated:
    (yes, the child did require more direct help/supervision than the adult buddies).

    The question was generated by concept that the child was severely overburdened with weight and required an adult to move her gear about for her, thus necessitating that her dive buddy become an ersatz baby sitter.
  3. GrierHPharmD

    GrierHPharmD Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Charlotte, NC
    Let me just chime in and say that I agree that you should discuss the situation with your instructor. I can't imagine a parent just dumping a child in a scuba class. Sounds like the instructor needs to have a candid conversation with the parent(s) to let them know just what scuba is all about and what serious business it is to go underwater...
  4. Bretagne

    Bretagne Barracuda

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: France
    Here, kids are not allowed to the certifications which allow to dive without a DM before 16. Between 8 and 14, there are special kid certifications, which never automatically upgrade to an adult ones. With these certifications, they are allowed to dive at shallow depth (depending on age and cert) alone with a DM, or in some specified cases 2 kids with a DM. They can pass the CMAS P* certification at 14, or from 12 with a derogation, but P* certification still obliges to dive with a DM, in groups not bigger than4+DM.
    In our club, 14 years kids which prepare P* or 16 years who prepare P** are not in the same group as adults, as the method used to teach them is different, even if the expected result is the same.
  5. Scott Riemer

    Scott Riemer Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Yorba Linda, CA
    You've already received the right advice but I wanted to chime in. I work with children every day from ages 6-12. There is not a single one of them that I would want as a dive buddy. None of them posess the maturity they would need to reason in an emergency (in my opinion). My own daughter is 12 and is getting interested in diving. We will probably pursue her certification but not just yet and when we do, we'll take it very slowly.

    You should not have to take on the extra stress of this child's welfare if you don't want to. Hope things work out for you.
  6. scubatoad

    scubatoad Angel Fish

    I would like to drift this thread slightly in another direction ...

    My Wife, 10yr old son, and I were all recently PADI OW certified. My greatest fears were that my son might not be able to master the tables & calculations required for the academic portion and that my wife might not be able to perform the various underwater skills required such as: mask flooding, and mask and regulator removal and replacement without panic and surfacing.

    My son completed the academic portion with an 88% with no help or coaching from us. My wife then completed the water tests, at various depths, each time without failure. There were several other classes (from other dive shops) at the popular local dive site, and some instructors were struggling with getting their students to merely accomplish the mask flooding ONCE, much less on consistently on demand, so that they could pass them. I do not think that accomplishing the task once, under no stress, qualifies as mastering a skill. If you cannot do it several times, on demand, consecutively, without failure, you have not mastered the skill.

    I would feel FAR more comfortable diving with my 10yr old son than with ANY of those folks that exhibit fear underwater. My son has been snorkeling since he was 6 and “snuba” diving since age 8 and has NO fear of the water getting in his eyes or nose. He is totally at ease when diving and would be an asset to a buddy diver in trouble. While in the final dive he saw another diver who was having trouble and re-attached their inflation hose to their BC which had dislodged during the dive (or never properly attached).

    Let’s not get too carried away with the generalities and stereotypes ... there are good and bad divers of all ages. Don’t dismiss (or accept) divers strictly on age alone.
  7. The Kraken

    The Kraken He Who Glows in the Dark Waters (ADVISOR) ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Location: Roswell/Alpharetta, GA
    Scubatoad, you have a valid point, but based upon one observation out of a population of how many?

    There are elements of your position that distance it from the scenario given in the basis of the thread. There is no mention of the young lady in question having any previous experience in a diving situation, unlike your son.

    We have to make generalizations in life, like it or not.

    There are many 10 year olds who are capable of operating an automobile, but would you give carte blanche to all 10 year olds to drive?

    I am sure you are knowledgeable in the abilities and limitations of your son. You and he may make a good buddy-pair, I reserve the right to maintain my doubts . . .

    I would not buddy up with him on a dive because I would want a buddy who I felt had the physical strength to handle my person in the case of an emergency.

    I worked with the Boy Scouts of America for many, many years as the council aquatics director. In the capacity of the council aquatics director it was my responsibility to over see the aquatics program offered by the council camp. I've worked with hundreds of boys from 11 years old to 16 years old. Based upon my experience with these scouts I am prepared to make a categoric statement that it is my opinion that 15 to 16 years of age is the earliest age at which a young person should start a full level diving program. It is my opinion that any younger than 15 or 16 the average young person has yet to develop the physical properties necessary to handle emergency situations with a person of average adult size.
  8. redacted

    redacted Guest

    This is probably one of those special cases. It's not really an untruth if you know the lawyer would give you that advice if you paid for it!
  9. Drew Sailbum

    Drew Sailbum Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives:
    Location: Grand Cayman
    I think it would be appropriate to essentially insist on being paried with your spouse in this case.

    I don't know SSI's take on the issue, but in any pool training for a PADI course with any student age 10 or 11, a maximum of 4 students are allowed in the session - no more than 2 of whom may be age 10 or 11.

    I hold differing opinions on what role parents should take. If the parent is learning with the child, then I have no problem with them both in the same course. If the parent is not taking the course and is not alredy certified then I don't mind if they sit quietly and observe.

    I do not want a parent who is already a certified diver in the water with a child who is learning. I prefer that they not even be present. I have had for too many parents try to be helpful and interrupt constantly, sometimes dangerously so.
  10. xSandman3

    xSandman3 Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Calimesa, CA
    My stepdaughters are 11 and 13, and they are both certified. The youngest just turned 11 last week, so she was ten when she started. I dive with her quite a bit, and she is a very good buddy, always staying with me, and constantly communicating. She is limited to 40', and I wouldn't take her any deeper, but she is great at that depth. Just the other day, she somehow got tangled up in my hoses swimming through the kelp. She didn't panic at all, just tapped me on the head and figured out how to get loose.
    On the other hand, if an instructor were to buddy me up with someone else's kid, I'd refuse to do it. There is too much digest in a class to have to babysit.

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