Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Kids Wednesday: Learning about the Olympics

When my son heard that the Olympics were going to be on this summer, he wanted to know more about them.  We picked out this book from the library.  It was a wonderful story that had lots of different chapters with information.

If your library doesn't have this great book, you can also check out the great books in the Magic Tree House series.  The first book is the Fact Tracker which is found in the non-fiction section where the second book is a fiction story featuring Jack and Annie learning about the Olympics.

We got very lucky because the library hosted a library program with a special speaker about the Olympics.  It was entitled Go For the Gold.  The leader shared stories of amazing Olympic victories the First Olympics.  He imparted a lot of excitement and sent them home with a little piece of paper with things that they could check out on You Tube including the following:

  • Alexander Karelin 2000 Olympic Wrestling Intro
  • Karelin Alexandre (RUS) Vs Gardner Rulon (USA)
  • 2000 Laura Wilkinson USA Olympic Win
  • Incredible Moment As Underdog Billy Mills Wins 10,000M Gold Tokyo 1964
  • Wilma Rudolph
There are some great coloring sheets that I printed out from Doodle Art Alley (found here). I really liked this one and I figured that it would be fun for kids or adults.

There are tons of other things that are fun to do with this to bring in Brazil including the book we enjoyed reading about the area that the Olympics were being held.

There are some other ideas to do crafts depending on the age of your children.  We did some of these at Olympic Summer Camp including finger painting with the colors of the Olympic rings using egg cartons for the different colors and the rings are printed in the colors so the kids just have to copy the outlines that are on the page.  You can certainly make your own or you can use this page with the words written on in black and white or one with color by number.   I don't remember where I found the one that is actually pictured...sorry!! If you have kids that don't like the feel of the paint on the finger or because you want, q-tip painting is also great with this.  If you don't want to use paint, try ink pads.

The most fun craft for the kids was soccer (see how that is both in the Olympics and very Brazilian).  We got a box and put two pieces of paper taped underneath and made two goals at the end.  There was a cheap plastic soccer ball.  There was one kid on each side of the box and we let them both pick a color which we put a drop on each paper.  The kids moved the ball back and forth and tried to get goals.  Some of the younger kids just liked seeing the soccer ball make the tracks while the older kids loved getting goals (and winning).  It was a fun craft and they got to take home a pretty picture at the end and here is the drying rack with a few pictured.

We also made baking soda spiders which were mixed and formed and then frozen to represent the spiders in the rain forest.  The next day, we dissolved them in vinegar to make a wonderful chemical reaction and the kids had tons of fun pulling out the gems and legs from the dissolved spiders. Details of how to make these spiders found here.

There are other great crafts like making a torch from tissue paper yellow, red, and orange or colors of your choice.  They are cut in the shape of a flame and then the aluminum foil wrapped paper towel holder around to make a handle like pictured here.

There are also making medals where you cut a piece of cardboard into a circle and cover with aluminum foil and attach a ribbon to the back.  Our kids decorated it with their names and wore them proudly.  We did simple ones so that the kids could make them by themselves so they were attached on the back with tape.  Here is one like what we made since all the pictures that I took had children attached to the medals.

We made a batch of sugar cookies and decorated some of them with the Olympic colors...skipping the black because I didn't want black mouths but we had it in the Halloween sprinkles so I probably should have made them too!!  My son enjoyed the measuring and mixing and doing it almost all on his own this time.

We had a great time learning about the Olympics and Brazil.  I hope that you are as excited about the Olympics and want to learn a little along side your children.  There is always tons of fun things to craft and make along with the learning process.  Hope that you have lots of fun!!

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