Celebrate the Winter Games with Fun Family Activities

I’ve been a patriotic soul since the first time I heard Lee Greenwood singing his classic “Proud To Be An American.”  I just may have belted it out and danced with pot lids with my bridesmaids at our wedding reception. I’ve enjoyed sports for as long as I can remember.

So when the Summer or Winter Games roll around, I find myself pulling out the red, white, and blue, and watching day and night whatever bits and pieces I can grab in between parenting duties.  I’m eager to expand our activities and delve a bit further as a family into the many learning opportunities The Winter Games have to offer.  After getting sucked into the Pinterest vortex one too many nights, I put on my teacher hat and tried to map out a manageable means of having fun and learning throughout the games. Please don’t view this so much as a how-to, but more so as one family’s real life attempt at making memories and learning together!

Let The Games Begin!

With the 2018 Opening Ceremony airing Friday, February 9, there is time to use a few minutes each day to prepare for the fun to come.

I Can Do It!

Olympic athletes train hard, know their bodies, and hope their dedication and sacrifice pay off in an ultimate sense of personal achievement. Preschoolers, as we know, can do a bit of their own shining, and what a great opportunity to celebrate their independent spirits and encourage their individuality.

With the Opening Ceremony fast approaching, each of us created a personal flag using crafting materials around the house. We happened to have some scraps of felt, a few jars of paint, and random flag “poles” like popsicle sticks and paper towel rolls. You can seriously use whatever you’ve got lying around ::  scrap paper, paper lunch sacks, straws, fabric, or even old sheets or undershirts.  We each picked a symbol that makes us unique and added some good old toilet paper roll stamped circles to some for the members of our family.

Flags

After watching Friday night, we will have plenty of time this weekend to parade around with our flags and keep them on display throughout the Games.

Come Together

The Winter Games bring athletes together as teammates and unites countries in fair play and respect. We began this week with the flags of various countries united in our Flags Around The Globe Wreath, and we continued with creating our own Olympic flag to start talking about people from continents all over the world coming together to compete.

The wreath directions can be found here, and the site offers a variety of activities and printables to adapt to various ages and abilities. Because I needed to hook my aviation-loving boy into craft time, I chose flags from counties represented in Disney’s Planes, and as we traced his hands, it was fun to watching him make the connections.  I imagine as we watch different events we can create another wreath with flags from new countries mentioned and perhaps design a plane or two in their honor!

Winter Olympics Flags Around the Globe Wreath

We spent a few minutes to put together the “O is for Olympics” craft originally found here, and then moved on to the flag. After a quick viewing of flag’s meaning, we grabbed some paint, the top to a Pringles container, and a piece of white felt for crafting. Again, use what you have! I definitely would recommend a top with more room for your little one to grab when dipping into paint. Toilet paper rolls would be ideal, but just have some fun and talk about continents, colors, numbers, placement, and unity along the way.

Winter Olympics Opening Ceremonies Family Flags

We all know fun food can be one way into a preschooler’s brain, so sometime in the next few weeks, grab some extra fruit on your next grocery trip {or use what you already have in your fridge like me!} for this Winter Games ring activity.

Winter Olympics Fruit Filled Olympic Rings

Patriotism

I’ve told you about my “USA, All the Way!” type of attitude already, so around here we will definitely track the medals our athletes earn throughout the Games. I set up my glittery mantel letters and attached three strands of leftover red Christmas ribbon to the back of one of our art display frames.

IMG_9179

Using the printable medals found here, we will do some cutting practice and hang up gold, silver, and bronze as we see the conclusion of events or catch the recaps throughout the day.

We will further keep track with the printable below by keeping a running tally, with the help of the news and/or Internet of course, and practice number writing as the totals rise. I plan to simply put contact paper over mine {in lieu of lamination} and use a dry-erase marker for our writing. You could also simply change out sticky notes on top.

Team USA Medal Count

printable download {8.5×11}

 

Throughout The Games!

We have a few short weeks to squeeze in some family fun before the Closing Ceremony, and I am looking forward to the mental break from the freezing February that we are having. It will be nice to spend some time as a family celebrating The Winter Games and our own spirit of individuality, achievement, unity, and patriotism! Be sure to tell us what you will be doing with your family and friends to make these Winter Games your own.

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