With their natural curiosity and affinity to learn new skills, children can make some of the best scuba divers. If you’re a certified diver and a parent, chances are you’re just looking for the right opportunity to share your passion for the underwater world with your kids.
So what are you waiting for? Read on and find out more about getting your little ones underwater and unlocking a lifetime of family scuba diving adventures.
First Steps: 8-9 Years Old
This program is perfect for allowing children to take their first breaths underwater in a controlled environment. Find out how comfortable they are in scuba gear while they fall in love with the underwater world.
PADI Seal Team
The PADI Seal Team is for young folks who are interested in learning to dive and are looking for action-packed fun in a pool. They begin with mastering basic scuba skills and earning their Seal Team certification. Then they can begin Master Seal Team training by undertaking exciting AquaMissions introducing them to wreck diving, navigation, buoyancy, underwater photography, environmental awareness and more.
PADI Junior Open Water Diver: 10-14 Years Old
The PADI Junior Open Water Diver course is similar to the adult certification program but with smaller teacher-to-student ratios and shallower depth limits. To enroll, kids must be 10 years old and able to swim. PADI Junior Open Water Divers automatically become Open Water Divers at the age of 15.
To ensure that young divers don’t exceed their limits, the PADI Junior Open Water certification comes with restrictions. Divers aged 10-11 must dive with a PADI Professional or a certified parent or guardian, and dives cannot exceed 12 meters (40 feet). Divers aged 12-14 years old must dive with a certified adult and dives cannot exceed 18 meters (60 feet) in depth. At 15 years old, regular Open Water Diver standards apply.
Classes kids can take by age
- Emergency First Response – Primary and Secondary Care
- PADI AWARE Specialty
6+ years old:
- Discover Mermaid™ Experience
- PADI Basic Mermaid™ Course
8+ years old:
- PADI Seal Team
- Master Seal Team
10+ years old:
- Discover Scuba Diving
- Junior Open Water Diver
- Junior Adventure Diver
- Altitude Diver
- Boat Diver
- Dive Against Debris
- Digital Underwater Photographer
- Dry Suit Diver
- Equipment Specialist
- Fish Identification
- Peak Performance Buoyancy
- Underwater Naturalist
- Underwater Navigator
- PADI Mermaid™ Course
12+ years old:
- Junior Advanced Open Water
- Junior Rescue Diver
- Delayed Surface Marker Buoy
- Diver Propulsion Vehicle Diver
- Drift Diver
- Enriched Air (Nitrox) Diver
- Full Face Mask
- Night Diver
- Search & Recovery
- AWARE Shark Conservation Diver
- PADI Basic Freediver
- PADI Freediver
Divers 12 years and older can become PADI Junior Master Scuba Divers, the highest rating a recreational diver under the age of 15 can achieve.
PADI Junior Divemaster: 15-17 Years Old
The PADI Junior Divemaster course is a subset of the PADI Divemaster course. The course is designed to engage and motivate interested youth, ages 15-17, until they are old enough to become PADI Divemasters. PADI Junior Divemaster candidates complete portions of the Divemaster course with some modifications to performance requirements.
While certified Junior Divemasters may not act as certified assistants or supervise divers, they can assist PADI Professionals with dive site set up and management, beach master duties, helping with skill demonstrations and dive site briefings. They can also serve as spokespeople for diving and give presentations to various groups in the community.
NOAA Ocean Guardians Dive Club
NOAA’s Ocean Guardian Dive Club is a nationally recognized youth dive program designed to strengthen youth involvement in diving and ocean conservation. Through knowledge development and hands-on dive activities, students develop a close personal connection with the ocean and an appreciation for our national marine sanctuaries.
The program educates students about important marine conservation issues such as marine debris, coral reef etiquette, maritime heritage and ocean acidification. It seeks to create ocean stewards who promote action for conservation in their communities and make choices that are actively tied to protecting the ocean.
Designed for kids 8-12 years of age who already have completed PADI Seal Team or earned the Junior Open Water Diver certification, this program takes place over multiple weekends at the pool and culminates in a local stewardship project. It’s a great way to keep kids diving and learning throughout the year!
Junior Scientists in the Sea: Summer Camps
Blue Planet is proud to be a local chapter for Junior Scientists in the Sea, a nonprofit STEAM program that introduces the brave and curious to the wonders of the underwater world. Kids can learn about marine biology and marine archaeology, expand their dive training with advanced courses and try their hand at photography, videography, using ROVs and drones!
Students can join specialized programs, enroll in the Homeschool program or join a summer camp in Florida or St Croix! Contact us for more information.