Going to London for 2012 Olympic Games Martina Toso, Italy



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Going to London for 2012 Olympic Games

Martina Toso, Italy

Martina Toso is a teacher of English language in Middle School "J. Vittorelli" in Bassano del Grappa (VI), Italy. She has worked for some years in the Export Department of an Italian company and finally this year she started to teach full time at school. In her words: “I attended a couple of courses at Pilgrims a long time ago and they have always been a "lighthouse" for my teaching”.

E-mail: martina_toso@yahoo.it

Menu

My aims

Reading comprehension

Surfing the net

Conclusion

My aims

As soon as I started to teach, with my true passion for education and focus on people development, I saw that it was necessary to connect students to the real world so I thought about a series of activities to motivate them and show them a practical use of English. I've designed an activity about the next London Olympic games based on the use of Internet.

The activity was carried out in third year class of Middle School, with students aged 13-14. The cultural topic was the Olympic Games to develop by exploiting their natural skills as digital natives.

My aims were not only to teach relevant vocabulary but to guide them through a responsible selection of useful information in a website.



Reading comprehension

First of all I gave the students some extracts about the Olympic games taken from Wikipedia. They read about them and answered the questions so they could concentrate on some specific information about past and present Olympic games.



THE OLYMPIC GAMES

(WIKIPEDIA)

Originally, the ancient Olympic Games were held in Olympia, Greece, from the 8th century BC to the 4th century AD. Baron Pierre de Coubertin founded the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in 1894. The evolution of the Olympic Movement during the 20th and 21st centuries has resulted in several changes to the Olympic Games. Some of these adjustments include the creation of the Winter Games for ice and winter sports, the Paralympic Games for athletes with a physical disability, and the Youth Olympic Games for teenage athletes. The IOC has had to adapt to the varying economic, political, and technological realities of the 20th century. As a result, the Olympics shifted away from pure amateurism, as envisioned by Coubertin, to allow participation of professional athletes. The growing importance of the mass media created the issue of corporate sponsorship and commercialization of the Games. World Wars led to the cancellation of the 1916, 1940, and 1944 Games. Large boycotts during the Cold War limited participation in the 1980 and 1984 Games.

The celebration of the Games has many rituals and symbols, such as the Olympic flag and torch, as well as the opening and closing ceremonies. The first, second, and third place finishers in each event receive Olympic medals; gold, silver, and bronze, respectively.

1. When and where did the first Olympic Games take place?

2. What are Paralympic Games?

3. When and why were they cancelled in the 20th century?

4. What medals can the athletes win?

THE FLAG

Created by Pierre De Coubertin in 1914.





The Olympic flag ... has a white background, with five interlaced rings in the centre: blue, yellow, black, green and red ... This design is symbolic ; it represents the five inhabited continents of the world, united by Olympism, while the six colors are those that appear on all the national flags of the world at the present time.



Pierre De Coubertin (1931)

1. What do the five rings represent?

2. What colour are the five rings and why?

THE OLYMPIC MOTTO

The Olympic motto, in Latin: "Citius, Altius, Fortius"; ( NB. which means, "Faster, Higher, Stronger").

Translate the Olympic motto.

.THE OLYMPIC TORCH RELAY

Lit in Greece, the Olympic Flame arrives in the UK on 18 May 2012 before setting out the next day on a 70-day Olympic Torch Relay, bringing the excitement of the Games to everyone.

The Olympic Flame stands for peace, unity and friendship. It will be carried by 8,000 truly inspirational Torchbearers



LICHTING THE FLAME

A very precise ritual for the lighting of the Flame is followed at every Games. It is lit from the sun's rays at the Temple of Hera in Olympia, in a traditional ceremony among the ruins of the home of the Ancient Games.

After a short relay around Greece, the Flame is handed over to the new Host City at another ceremony in the Panathenaiko stadium in Athens.

The Flame is then delivered to the Host Country, where it is transferred from one Torchbearer to another, spreading the message of peace, unity and friendship.

It ends its journey as the last Torchbearer lights the Cauldron at the Opening Ceremony in the Olympic Stadium, marking the official start of the Games. The Flame then stays lit until it is put out at the Closing Ceremony, signifying the end of the Games.

1. Where is the torch lit?

2. When does the torch arrive in London?

3. What’s the message of the flame?

4. When is the flame put out?

Surfing the net

Then I gave them a sort of path to follow through the official London website:



www.london2012.com

In order to help them surf in the website, I selected the topics they had to look for and asked them some questions they could answer by choosing the information given in the website. They worked in pairs and learnt about some key words (accommodation, countdown, names of sports, food) and they revised names of countries, sports, numbers etc. After looking for information I had selected, they were free to choose according to their personal tastes. This enabled them to have a more active participation.

After this activity we discussed about the different choices thus revising the tenses we had studied (e.g. “Why have you chosen this sport?”/ “If you went to London, what final would you go to?” “What country would you like to visit and why?” “If you could buy a present, would you buy on this online shop?” “Do you think you’ll visit London some time?” etc)

THE OLYMPIC GAMES

1. How often are the Olympic games.?

2. When and where were the last Olympic games?

3. When and where will be the next Olympic games?

4. Which is the Olympic games official website?

www.london2012.com

Translate: “Countdown to the Opening Ceremony”:



What’s the countdown this very moment?

TORCH RELAY / ROUTE

How many communities will the Flame go through?

SPORTS DISCIPLINES

How many sports disciplines are there this year?



COUNTRIES

Choose one country for every continent and write:





Continent

Country

Population

Capital

Language(s)

Tot. Olympic medals



























































































SPECTATORS / VISITING

If you have to find a hotel what word do you have to click on?............................................................

What food have they chosen to represent the typical British food?.....................................................

TICKETS
Tickets/About tickets/Tickets prices and competition schedule
How much do tickets for the opening ceremony cost?
















How much do tickets for the closing ceremony cost?
















Choose three sports and write the price of the final.



SPORT

PRICE OF THE FINAL



















PARALYMPIC GAMES

1. When do they start?

2. When do they finish?

3.When will the torch relay take place?

4. How many sports are there?

LONDON 2012 SHOP- SHOP NOW

Travel essentials

How much does the London 2012 Olympic Museum historic limited edition umbrella cost?

How much does the London 2012 Union Jack backpack cost?

Union Jack favourites

How much does the London 2012 Union Flag logo mug - boxed cost?

How much does the London 2012 Union Jack cap cost?

Mascots

Write the names of the mascots:



Conclusion

If students “learn what they do” by this activity they have done a lot…..let’s hope they have learnt as much!



The Methodology and Language for Secondary Teachers course can be viewed here.

The ICT - Using Technology in the Classroom – Level 1 course can be viewed here.

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