The opening of the Olympic Games is this Friday! To celebrate we had our own Olympics celebration at storytime yesterday. We read books about competition, good sportsmanship, and London, where the 2012 Olympics are being held.
First I held up a picture similar to the above image and I asked the kids if they knew how many athletes were competing in this year’s Olympic Games (14,000 athletes) and how many nations were being represented (205 nations). I also said what the Olympic motto is (“Higher. Faster. Stronger.”) and explained the symbolism behind the Olympic rings.
Next, I showed the kids this picture of the this year’s Olympic Gold Medal and asked them to guess who the woman with the wings is (Nike, the Goddess of Victory… not the shoe brand). Which lead me to briefly explain that the Olympics started many, many years ago by the ancient Greeks. I kept things very simple and brief and the books where chosen so that the youngest storytimers could get excited and be aware of the the festivities ahead.
Olympics Storytime Line-Up:
A Walk in London by Salvatore Rubbino
This book is a little on the long side, so I abbreviated parts. It’s a wonderful way to learn about London’s famous landmarks through a mother and daughters afternoon in a city full of history. Since the TV networks will be flashing scenes of the city, I thought it would be fun for kids to be able to recognize a few of the key monuments.
The Tortoise and the Hare, an Aesop Fable adapted and illustrated by Janet Stevens
The classic tale of hard work, perseverance, and a lesson in good sportsmanship.
Make the Team, Baby Duck! by Amy Hest, illustrated by Jill Barton
You’ll never know the champion within, if you don’t try.
Clifford The Champion by Norman Birdwell
Everyone’s favorite red dog learns that winning isn’t always everything.
Materials needed: Straws, aluminum lids from glass jars (jelly, spaghetti, mason jars), ribbon, tape, sharpie, scissors, paper, and whatever you’d like to use to decorate the flag (colored pencils, crayons, markers, etc.)
For the flag, I printed and cut out flags using this template.
We used markers to color our flags, but you can use whichever coloring tool you’d prefer.
Once finished coloring, the straws were taped to the back of the flag.
For the medals, I used the lids I had leftover from the Mother’s Day Storytime craft.
I spray painted them using leftover spray paint from this Magic Tree House Adventures craft. Both sides, two coats. I did this all the day before storytime.
At storytime, I pre-cut ribbon into 14-inch strips and had tape, stickers, and sharpies available for the kids to use.
On the back of the lid, tape the ends of your ribbon.
For the younger kids, I encouraged parents to be the sharpie user. They could write their name, or “USA”, or “#1″, or really, whatever they’d like.
Star stickers were used to decorate the medals.