10 Classroom Ideas To Celebrate the Olympics

1-2 minutes

In this blog, you will learn:

  • About the history behind the Olympic games.
  • 10 classroom ideas to celebrate the Olympics.
  • How to find and apply for the best education and SEND jobs.

With the Olympics just around the corner, is your class getting ready to celebrate the Olympic games? Commemorating the Olympics in the classroom can be a fun way for students to learn about sports, geography and history as well as the values of hardwork and perseverance. The Olympic games present unique learning opportunities for children to discover more about culture and heritage.

Throughout this blog, we suggest 10 Olympic themed activities that Teachers can use to incorporate the spirit of the Olympic games into their classrooms.

What are the Olympics?

The Olympic Games are a global sporting event that take place once every four years. Thousands of athletes across more than 200 nations compete in their chosen sport, representing their country.

The Olympic Games aim to bring people across multiple countries together through sport from swimming and archery, to skateboarding and fencing. 

There are two types of games - Summer and Winter Olympics. The 2024 Summer Olympic and Paralympic games will take place in Paris, France and the Olympic games will run from July to August finishing with the official closing ceremonies.

10 classroom ideas to celebrate the Olympics

  • Share the history of the Olympic games.
  • Organise your own ‘Classroom Olympics.’
  • Create an Olympic torch.
  • Flag activities.
  • Olympic rings toss.
  • Make your own medals.
  • Host an Olympic quiz.
  • A day in the life of an Olympian.
  • Design your own Olympic outfit.
  • Host your own closing ceremony.

Share the history of the Olympic games

The Olympics are over 1,000 years old and there is a lot of history and culture to be learnt and celebrated. Why not teach your students about everything from the flame and torch, the story behind the Olympic rings or all of the different sports in the history of the games?

The Olympics is a great opportunity to teach students about different cultures, countries and the importance of perseverance and diversity.

Organise your own ‘Classroom Olympics’

Why not organise everyone into teams and hold your own mini Olympic games in the classroom? It doesn’t have to be too much, it can be anything from paper plane throwing and obstacle courses to egg and spoon races - anything that gives all pupils a chance to get involved and compete.

It provides a chance to motivate and support teammates and opponents in the classroom while experiencing the benefits of healthy competition, resilience and unity. Students can develop awareness of working hard to beat their personal bests and learn how to be a good sportsperson who can show honour in defeat or win with dignity.

Create an Olympic torch

Sports isn’t for everyone, and while it’s good to encourage students to be active and participate in physical activities, the Olympics also provides a great opportunity to be creative and artistic.

You could teach students about the meaning behind the Olympic flame and torch, and for those who haven't had the opportunity to see it through their town, why not make your own? Using tissue paper or recycled materials, challenge your class to design and DIY their own Olympic torch!

While being creative, you could also teach students about the valuable reasons to recycle, protect the environment and upcycle natural materials like plastic water bottles, tin cans and cardboard tubes.

Flag activities

Flags play a significant role at the Olympics, from the opening and closing ceremony to the medal presentations, they add to the spirit and proudness of the event. Teachers could take the Olympics as an opportunity to teach children about the hundreds of different flags of countries, territories and states around the world.

There are many different flag activities that embrace geography, culture and history including drawing flags, decorating the classroom or even designing your own flag. 

Or why not test your students' knowledge of flags with a quiz or competition? Or map the various locations of the cities that have hosted the Olympic games on a map of the world?

Olympics rings toss

In a game of skill, accuracy and colour recognition, challenge your pupils to create their own Olympic rings ready for a ring toss! Use cardboard, wires, or actual rings to organise a few games of a ring toss to keep your classroom excited about the Olympics.

Split your class into 5 teams, with each team representing one of the different coloured Olympic rings. Take it in turns and either keep score of how many correctly coloured rings each player scores into, or have fun with it and create your own rules!

If the weather is nice, take the game outdoors!

Make your own medals

You could integrate other subjects like arts and crafts and challenge your class to design and create their own Olympic medals. Teach students about the significance of the Olympic medals, and for afternoon, why not encourage them to create their own medals. This will allow them to play around with the colours, shape and textures.

Not only is it fun, but it also gives students something to take home and be proud of! These can also be used if you decide to host an Olympic games at your school or to recognise end of year achievements in the classroom.

Host an Olympic-themed quiz

Why not keep it educational and test your students' knowledge of the Olympics with a fun quiz? Whether it's true or false, multiple choice or an online quiz, get your pupils engaged in a fun and competitive learning environment.

Participating in a quiz requires teamwork, discussion and challenges students to think critically. Quiz subjects could include geography, sports and history. For students, it can enhance cognitive skills, social skills and improve memory.

A day in the life of an Olympian

The Olympics are full of great role models for children to learn from; this includes the importance of being healthy, active and working hard to achieve goals.

You could ask your students to write about their favourite Olympian, healthy habits, lifestyle and sportsmanship.

Get students to do some research about their favourite sportstar and learn some facts that they can include in their writing. Encourage them to think about training schedules, preparing to compete and working hard to achieve goals and be a good role model.

There are different forms that this can take e.g. a diary entry, comic strip, social media post or an interview! Students could create a timeline of their chosen athlete’s career, marking significant events like their first competition and Olympic participation.

Design your own Olympic outfit

Another artistic activity designed to test your students creativity and imagination is to engage your class to design sportswear for the Olympics. 

Either print out some colouring activity templates, or challenge students to design an outfit from scratch for their favourite Olympic sport or sports star. Ask students to consider the country and culture for the kit, including the materials they would use to create it.

From appropriate shoes and accessories, to colours and branding, teach students about the importance of representing the Olympians culture.

Closing ceremony

If you’ve hosted your own Olympic games in the classroom, a closing ceremony is a great way to end the celebrations. Even without hosting a mini Olympics, you could host a closing ceremony highlighting and recognising end of year achievements in the classroom. 

This could be to celebrate good attendance, the hardest worker, most improved, or celebrate personal growth.

The ceremony is a good chance to demonstrate particular pieces of work or successes throughout the school year. The prizes can be anything from homemade medals, certificates or just the chance to be recognised and appreciated by fellow classmates.

You could make it a bigger celebration by inviting parents, playing music or organising games and entertainment (maybe some students can perform a dance routine or recite a poem/short story in between awards).

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