Day 8: Create Your Own Winter Olympics

2010_winter_olympics_logo1Are you going a stir crazy? Have you been watching too much tv? I thought that for today we would try and get some exercise and have fun with our brains at the same time. Instead of watching the Olympics, why don’t you create your own? Here are some ideas for doing your own Olympics event at home. I got these ideas from a whole bunch of different places. Do you wan to do these activities with a group? Add to the atmosphere for the afternoon by creating a torch to light the opening ceremonies of the games by decorating the cardboard tube from paper towel. Then cut twelve-inch squares of red, yellow, and orange tissue paper, two for each color. Lay the squares on top of one another and push the center of the squares into one end of the cardboard tube. Leave most of the tissue poking out of the tube. Separate the layers of tissue for flames.

Scoring for each game can be up to the players – they can determine the winning number of points for a game. Or kids playing on their own can create their own challenges. Have the students create a map of their events and where they are taking place as well.

The Joyful Heart Blog has a great post on how they did their Winter Olympics. You can use their ideas for your own Olympics!

Our Opening Ceremonies were not grand by any means, but it built excitement that would lead up to the Olympic events for the day.

  • We located Vancouver, British Columbia on our globe (as well as the other countries for which we had flags).
  • Each child represented their chosen country. We attached mini flags to our shirts and to our winter hats to indicate which country we represented.
  • We reviewed and discussed Colossians 3:23–24.
  • Make Olympic rings from tissue paper
  • To get more familiar with the winter sports involved in the Olympics, we viewed photos of real events and watched a few short video clips from the official Olympic site.
  • Next, they played Winter Olympics Bingo.

Our Olympic Events

Figure Skating
The Olympians ‘skated’ in their sock feet, attempting to spin and twirl on one foot, jumping and landing on one foot, and of course, performing the free skate.

Ice Cube Bobsled Race

Yes, we had to bundle up…After all, it’s cold on the track!

Olympic Ring Toss
The Olympians attempted to throw diving rings onto a full bottle of pop.


Cross Country Skiing


Snowball Throwing
Snowball Throw1
Snowball Throw3
Should he have been disqualified for stepping over the line?

Sight Word Ice Hockey
Sight Word Hockey
This was a cute idea from Making Learning Fun.  You could also do addition or subtraction facts!

Figure Skating

Use this link (‘ice’ hockey player and figure skater) to make your own figure skaters in a cup and roll them along the counter. See how far they can go or try to make them twirl.

Additional Activities
For added fun, we brought some snow inside to discover ways to melt it.  Each child received an ice cube as well and tried to be the first one to make it disappear.  They tried adding salt to it, pouring warm water over it, rubbing it between their hands, and even tapping it.

You can also do a Roll and count activity, Olympic word searches (1) (2).

Here are some more activities you can add to your events or just make up your own!

Sock Basketball

Roll up a few pairs of socks into balls. Place an empty wastebasket or bucket near a wall where there are no breakable objects. Stand five steps back from the bucket and throw the sock balls into the wastebasket. When this becomes easy, take a step back. Kids can keep trying to see how far back they stand from the basket and still score.

Hold a trick shot exhibition – underhanded, under the leg, with a jump, with the opposite hand, etc. Kids can time themselves to see how many sock balls they can get in sixty seconds.

Potato Bowling

Draw a circle on a large piece of paper. Place the paper on the floor and take two steps back from the circle. Get four potatoes and roll them toward the circle. Because potatoes aren’t round, this is more challenging than it sounds. When it does become easy, take another step backwards.

Field Goal Challenge
Wad a few pieces of paper into tight balls. Cut a twelve inch piece of string. Turn this into a goalpost by tying this string to two chair legs three inches above the floor. Lie or kneel on the floor. Set the paper six inches from the string goalpost. Flick the index finger against the thumb to flip the paper over the goal post. Earn a point for each field goal. If this is easy, tie the string field goal at six, nine, or twelve inches off the floor.

Broom Hockey

Roll a pair of socks into a ball. Find some space to play the game where nothing can get damaged. Set a kitchen chair or another chair with visible legs at one end of the room. Take the sock ball and a broom to the opposite side of the room. Hit the sock with the broom bristles with the goal of getting the sock between the chair’s legs.

Tennis Ball Golf

Gather a yardstick, three tennis balls and three large aluminum cans (the tennis ball should fit inside). Set the cans on their sides with the open ends facing the player. Take five steps back from the cans place the tennis balls on the floor. Hold one end of the yardstick and tap the other end against a tennis ball to roll it into one of the aluminum cans.

Tennis Ball Bowling

Look for a hallway that isn’t carpeted. At the far end of the hall, set up ten empty cans or cups as the bowling pins, set into a triangular shape. Step to the other end of the hallway and roll a tennis ball at the pins and try to get a strike by knocking down all the pins.

With recycled materials and other things found around the house, like ping pong balls and coins, kids can play indoor Olympic games. Whether alone or testing their skills against their friends, kids can award themselves with sticker stars or make an Olympic medal to wear.

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