Watching Olympics with kids: an eye opener

7 Aug

Apart from a superb introduction to the inspiration that sport can be to kids, the olympics 2012 have proven to be an incredibly powerful lesson in the foundations of philosophy, ethics, physics, genetics, fashion, maths, geography, international relations and a host of other very important and fancy adult subjects. Do you want to know why?
Geography is self explanatory: by day 7 of the London olympics my 6 year old was naming the countries correctly, identifying them by the colour of the uniform and the flag on the scoreboard. The 4,5 year old was commenting on fashion, i was surprised to hear that she could settle on anything that is not a pink tutu. A note for the future and excellent role models to keep in mind (perhaps they will go as far as replacing the oinking family).

Now, Philosophy was derived at via geography. here is the statement: ‘Mum, we haven’t travelled at all. We haven’t been to North America, South America, Canada, Bahamas, Africa and other places. We can’t waste time’ I liked it, in his mind it was a smallworld – one world with no boundaries and restrictions and full of powerful, strong and fit people. Even if that statement dismissed having travelled to most countries in Europe, still, it’s a perspective, a healthy one.
Ethics, what does it mean to loose and to win. Are there terms such as ‘good’ or ‘bad’. What place does the old motto of ‘it’s participation that matters most’ has in the world of modern olympics? I couldn’t find it and neither could my son. It’s all or nothing today, winners and losers. Sadly?

Maths, almost as the result of the ethical shift towards the winning – its the endless medal count refresh, it’s the ‘we’ and ‘them’ but at least it’s a healthy maths lesson for the little ones. The one they don’t notice and hugely enjoy.

Physiscs, genetics, some interesting observations on body weight and a certain shape that athletes of each sport have. A fascinated look on their faces when they see an athlete fly in the air for the long jump. How is that even possible? Why do darker people always win the running and where in the world is Bahamas and Jamaica?

Its a brilliant eye opening experience and an interest that i hope will continue even after the games.

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One Response to “Watching Olympics with kids: an eye opener”

  1. Mascha August 8, 2012 at 2:45 pm #

    really enjpyed this article. glad to have you back! hope to hear more throughout the olympics.

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