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Chinese number 3.

1896 Athens

Level 4 Achievement objective, B2

Students will demonstrate willingness to accept challenges, learn new skills, extend their abilities in movement-related activities.

Learning objective

Students will:

  • participate in a variety of novelty movement activities replicating sports/themes from the first modern Olympic Games.

Level 4 Achievement objective, C3

Students will describe and demonstrate a range of assertive communication skills and processes that enable them to interact appropriately with other people.

Learning objectives

Students will:

  • investigate five universal ethics of Olympism
  • describe the characteristics of these ethics in relation to sport and playing games
  • demonstrate these universal ethics when participating in sport.

See Athens 1896.


Activity 1 – ‘World Wind’

Discuss the answer to the Chinese whisper which indicates the origin for today’s lesson. The class will travel forward in time to Athens. Identify where in the world Athens is in relation to both New Zealand and Olympia (our previous location). As a class, decide on the number of laps around the field that would equate to an imaginary journey between Olympia and Athens. Compare this to the imaginary distance from New Zealand to Olympia. Each group must travel as a team (‘World Wind’) to the new destination.

Activity 2 – ‘Run Riot’

Divide the class into two big teams and play a game of soccer without formal rules (just set up the safety rules required).

Note: The intention of this game is to highlight:

  • the need for rules for effective game playing
  • that playing games and sport is a potent context for teaching and learning values.

Pause play and consider the following questions:

  • How did it feel to play this game?
  • How would we change the game to ensure all students were involved and played fairly, and what would this look like?
  • Why is it important that this happens?
  • What was learnt by playing the game in this way?

Refine the game by establishing rules as a result of responses to questions above. Return to game.

Ask the following questions:

  • How did it feel to play this game?
  • How did the changes to the game improve things for everyone?
  • What can having rules teach us?

Three relevant Olympic Taonga for this lesson:

  • Pierre de Coubertin
  • Olympism
  • Olympic Rings

The teacher should begin with a blurb/narration that essentially expands on the above taonga and then play associated activities. Refer to the Olympic website for information for narration.

  • Activity: Pétanque – play within teams if there are five sets; if there are not five sets, play teams against one another.
  • Olympic Rings: Five interlaced rings coloured blue, yellow, black, green, and red (just as the students’ teams are), collectively symbolise the five continents united by Olympism (Africa, Asia, Europe, Oceania, and Americas) and the meeting of athletes from around the world at the celebration of the Olympic Games (, p. 3). Understanding Olympism
  • Activity: Human knots (Rhonke, Silver Bullets) – Each team stands in a circle. Each student places their right hand into the middle, joining with another student’s right hand; then places left hand into the middle, joining with another student’s left hand. This should form an effective tangle and the team must attempt to untangle without releasing hands, and try to form a circle. (If done quickly, join with another group and repeat the activity.)
  • Olympism: This is a particular set of life principles that can be explored and learned through sport. There are four values as follows: balanced development of body, will, and mind; joy found in effort; educational value of being a good role model for others; and respect for universal ethics including tolerance (rangimārie), generosity, unity, friendship, non-discrimination and respect for others (manaakitanga – support for others; āwhina – helping assisting, befriending, and providing moral support).
  • Activity: Refer to: Ministry of Education. (2004). "Cooperate and Compete" in Olympism: Attitudes and values in physical education years 5–7 , p. 28. (from the Curriculum in Action series). An alternative is to allocate each group a specific universal ethic (tolerance, generosity, unity, friendship, respect for others). Groups make a list of how their allocated ethic would look and sound and feel like when playing a cooperative game. Choose a cooperative game to play and groups must participate, demonstrating characteristics of their universal ethic.

Key questions

  • What did Pierre de Coubertin believe about sport and learning?
  • What are some of the universal ethics you saw other teams portray and how were these portrayed?
  • Which of these universal ethics do you think are most important and why?
  • How could you teach your friends about this in the playground?

Truce time:
Discuss relevant information from this session. Each team is required to ask a question of the class.

Deliver Chinese whisper:
“This is a 'journey of harmony', what do the Fuwa say?".

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