The Olympics are almost here and there’s no better time to teach students about geography, social studies, and sportsmanship! While your students may not be in the classroom during the Summer Olympics, you can easily incorporate an Olympics unit into your back-to-school lessons. Check out these fun and student-approved ideas from Really Good Teachers!
Olympics Lessons for Kids
“To begin celebrating the Olympics, I secure five large hula hoops in colors that match those of the Olympic rings,” explained Sofia, a Really Good 3rd Grade Teacher, from Riverside, CA. “I tie the hoops together to create an eye-catching display. I then have children brainstorm a list of game events they would like to compete in as well as rules on how to play each one. Students can create new games or suggest games already in the Olympics, such as footraces. We record these on chart paper.
Before our actual competition, I have children run through each event to make certain they know how to play and what to expect as well as to how to exhibit good sportsmanship. I conclude our Olympic celebration by awarding each participant a mini medal purchased at the dollar store.”
Teacher Tip: Cut out medal size disks from cardboard and cover them in heavy-duty tinfoil before punching a hole at the top for a ribbon.
Martina, a Really Good 3rd Grade Teacher, from Rio Rancho, NM also has her students learn about the Olympics. “To celebrate the Olympics, we ask each of our students to represent a country that corresponds with his or her family’s country of origin. We then have students research the flags from their countries and have them render them on construction paper so they can display them in our Parade of Nations,” she said.
“We also hold our own competitive Olympic events including ball dribbling, one leg balancing, jump roping and hula hooping. Students win ribbons for their respective countries. We compare the classroom country results with those of the actual Olympics.”
How do you celebrate the Olympics with your students? Share with us below or on the Really Good Teachers Forum!