Wednesday, February 19, 2014

7 Lessons from Winters Olympics for Kids

While watching the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia with your family, don’t miss out on the opportunity to teach them some valuable life lessons. From the opening ceremony to the closing of the Olympics, there are many teachable moments on topics ranging from sportsmanship to world geography to health and nutrition.

Seven Lessons from Winters Olympics for Kids

Lesson #1: Sportsmanship

Sportsmanship, both bad and good, is on display in every event in the Olympics. Have your child watch for examples of good and bad sportsmanship. Do the athletes accept their victories with grace? Are they able to handle defeat with grace as well? Do they support their fellow teammates in victory and defeat? Are they able to show respect to their coaches? Ask your child how they can exhibit good sportsmanship in their everyday lives.

Lesson #2: Competition

The athletes at the Olympic Games are the best of the best. Talk to your children about the commitment necessary to compete at this level. Do internet research together to see how many hours of practice a week it takes to have a chance to make the Olympic teams. Teach your family it is important to strive to be the best but in the end, participation counts more than anything.

Lesson #3: Exercise and Nutrition

Olympic athletes must usually follow a very specific diet. They have to choose the correct balance of nutrients to help repair their muscles and fuel their body for competition. Discuss with your child the importance of following a healthy balanced diet. Encourage them to eat their vegetables and fruits by using their favorite Olympian as an example.Exercise also plays a major part in an Olympian’s life.

In addition to spending many hours a week training specifically for their sport, they also spend many hours cross training. They need to develop skill specific to their sport as well as condition their body. The Olympics expose your child to lots of different sports activities. After they are done watching the Olympics, encourage your child to get out and get some exercise.

Tip: Tiny Keepsakes has a great selection of colorful meal time plates to make this fun.

Lesson #4: World Geography

During the games, keep a world map or your tablet or laptop handy. Then your family can research all the different countries that attend the Olympics. Take a look back at the opening ceremonies or upcoming closing ones, pay attention to the different country flags and the athlete’s choice of clothing. You can also use your laptop or tablet to research the cultures and foods of different countries.

Lesson #5: Don’t Give Up

During the actual competition, the athletes might fall down on ice or snow but are quick to get up and continue with their performance. Point out how these athletes don’t give up just because they fell. Instead they get up quickly and move right back into their routine.

Lesson #6: Don’t be Afraid to Ask for Help

No Olympic athlete has ever gotten to the Olympics by themselves. They all need some type of help and support. They may get help from their coaches and team mates. They may even get help and support from some of their competitors. The athletes have to know their strengths and weaknesses and be able to ask for help in overcoming their weaknesses.

Lesson #7: Strive to be Your Best

Emphasize the importance of always striving to be the best you can be. While most of us will never be Olympic athletes, it is still important to put in the time and effort to do things well. Whether you are discussing sports, hobbies or schoolwork, practice and dedication will help your child reach their full potential.

The Olympic Games showcase the best athletes in the world. Athletes from countries from around the world come together for a world class competition. There are many life lessons you and your child can learn while watching the Olympics.

Tell us your favorite life lesson from the Olympics.