Do you remember the excitement you felt each time you viewed the Olympics. Our family would gather together to watch the extraordinary events, and play during those special summers and winters turned to Olympic play as we created gymnastics, swimming, hockey and running competitions similar to the athletic events we were viewing daily. The Olympics served to inspire us as well as we talked about and listened to the stories of the athletes' lives and dedication.
Recently, students in our school celebrated the 2012 London Olympics with a school-wide assembly. Teachers pitched in to coach students and contribute their time to making the assembly a success. A dedicated fifth grade teacher guided students' speech writing and presentation skills. Using the "ted talk" format, two students gave speeches about the famous Olympic medal winners, track star Jesse Owens and swimmer Gertrude Ederle. That teacher also guided another student's presentation about his father who participated in the Olympics. A small group of students created a film, and our art teacher and music teacher got together to lead the school in singing You’re a Grand Old Flag while second grade artists waved the red, white and blue bunting they’d created. The ceremony ended with an athletic event as three girls entertained students with unicyle riding and tricks. Throughout the assembly, another fifth grade teacher took wonderful pictures which were later published in the town newspaper as a way of sharing the event with the community.
Hopefully, the assembly served to spur on students' and the community's excitement and anticipation for the 2012 London Olympics to come. Thematic assemblies are one way to pull a school community together to celebrate and learn about important cultural and historic events.