Enjoying the water doesn’t have to ONLY be about swimming, especially during the dog days of summer. If you love the pool – and have enthusiastic little swimmers – you’ll want to do more than watching and waiting for “Watch this trick, Mom!” or “Look at me, Dad!”

Pool games can be a fun way to spend time with the little guppies in your life – just playing, relaxing and enjoying the water – much like our Family Swim! But if you are like most parents, you might have a hard time coming up with something different than Marco Polo. Don’t worry! The experts at Goldfish Swim School are here to help, ensuring you have a GOLDEN experience with your kids this summer.

Here are six pool games everyone in your family will LOVE to play this summer. Read on:

1. Keep-Away

For this, you’ll need a ball that can get wet. This one is fun for everyone and burns some serious energy while leaping and swimming for the ball. Designate someone who is “it” to be in the middle and start tossing the ball. The point is to keep the ball away from the person who is “it,” for as long as possible. When the person who is “it” gets the ball, the person who last threw it is now “it.”

2. Underwater Races

Sometimes, these are called dolphin, submarine or mermaid races. The point is to swim a length of the pool with one breath. This one is good for teaching and enhancing breath control, one of the skills your little Goldfish student is always working on! Practice and you’ll see some extraordinary results!

3. Diving for Treasure

This one is simple and will allow parents to chill for a minute. Basically, toss a bunch of coins in the pool, call it Treasure, and have the kids dive for them. They keep what they find at the end, but you can do multiple rounds so the game lasts and lasts (and lasts!)

4. Diving Contest

Everyone does their best dive or jump into the pool (belly flop, jackknife, etc.) and a neutral party judges the show. You can also have everyone “win” by assigning biggest splash, highest jump, longest jump, most style, most graceful, etc. That’s something to celebrate!

5. Invisi-Bottle

Take a clear plastic bottle, fill it with water and have everyone turn their backs. Toss it in the water and let it sink, then have everyone jump in the pool. First to find it (it’s harder than it seems!) is the winner. You can even do this in teams and award points, with the first to five (or 10, or whatever) being the winner.

6. Ping-Pong Scramble

Get a bunch of ping-pong balls and use a Sharpie to number them (1-20 is ideal). Then, divide into teams. Toss the balls in the pool and have everyone jump in and grab as many as they can. The team with the most points wins!

7. Popsicle Freeze Tag 

This is just like a classic game of freeze tag on land, but it requires swimmers to go underwater to unfreeze players. Someone is “it” and can tag players to freeze them. Once frozen, someone has to stand still in the pool like a popsicle. The only way to unfreeze a player is to swim underwater and touch one of their feet. (For added difficulty, you can require someone to actually swim underneath the player to unfreeze them).

Goldfish Swim School

At Goldfish Swim School, our instructors use integrity, compassion and trust so children learn proper swim techniques and water safety skills – at every lesson. Children as young as four months can take lessons, too. Find a Goldfish Swim School near you and check out our WOW! Customer service.