By Leslie Lindsay
(image retreived 7.31.12 from www.sheknows.com)I don’t know about your kids, by mine are totally digging the Olympics. My 7-year old daughter is especially intrigued with the swimming and gymnastics. My 5-year old is more into the how’s and why’s of the Olympics. In fact, her question at the breakfast table just yesterday was, “Who invented the Olympics, anyway?” (I think I know that information from a Greek mythology class I took in college…yet it escapes me).
To answer my daughter’s question: The person who “invented” the Olympics is Baron Pierre de Coubertin1894 when he created the International Olympic Committee (IOC). Yet, the Olympic games first began in ancient Greece in the 8th-4th century B.C. …so who “invented” it is beyond me. …okay, maybe it was Herecules?.
- Relate Stories about when you were a youngster watching the Olympics for the first time. Do you remember who competed in what events? Mary Lou Rettin? Nancy Kerrigan? What else was going on in your life at that time? (Kids love a good, “when mommy/daddy was little” story)
- Connect your child’s favorite sport with one of the Olympic events…have an avid volleyball player on your hands? Swimmer? Runner? Gymnast? What would it take for them to get to Olypmic potential? Do they have those kind of goals? What are the pros/cons of becoming that invested in a sport? Make a list. Do some reseach of the Internet.
- Draw pictures of the events.
- Imagine if there were to be another event of Olympic magnatude…what would it be? What would the contestants be expected to do? (maybe it’s art, math, music, something else?)
- Allow your child(ren) a couple of nights to stay up late watching a favorite event, the closing ceremonies, etc.…it will create memories of a lifetime.
- Learn about London–the location for the 2012 Summer games. Why and how was London chosen? What else happens(ed) in London? (last time the Olympics were held in London was 1908…do some math with your kids…how long ago was that?)
- Create an Olympic obstacle course at home. Maybe you can have your kids run the 50 meter dash, or do some hurdling, biking, swimming, gymnastics, etc. Better yet, have the kids create their own course and test each other, friends, or neighbors…be sure to give out medals!
- Throw a little party/get-together for your kids and their athletic-minded friends…with these ideas….http://www.sheknows.com/parenting/articles/965371/throw-a-2012-olympic-party-for-kids
For More information, see:
- I really like this one, a list of little known facts about the Olympics, http://www.sheknows.com/parenting/articles/965411/10-cool-facts-about-the-olympics-that-your-kids-will-love
- Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olympic_Games
- Ancient Olympic Games http://www.olympic.org/ancient-olympic-games
- Scott Donie, former Olympian shares ideas on how to connect with your kids and the Olympics http://mommybites.com/col2/nanny/how-to-enjoy-watching-the-olympics-with-your-kids/
That’s it…class dismissed!!