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Who comes first? – Chris Hudson

ISBN 9780 8574 6048 6

BRF, 2011, £6.99


What are the Olympic and Paralympic games about?  Their values are Friendship, Respect, Excellence, Determination, Inspiration, Courage and Equality and these were the ideals with which Pierre de Coubertin reinvented the Olympic Games.  Later, the parallel Paralympic Games, inspired by the first Games for athletes with a disablity held at Stoke Mandeville when London hosted the Olympics in 1948, espoused the same values.  But are the Games really about this?  This book is intended for use with ten year old school children and is one way to find an answer to that question with them.  The stories could also be used with older people but probably a teacher would need you to ask other questions than those in the book and work with them in other ways.

In this book the reader meets some more or less famous Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games athletes.  Stories about their participation in the Games and their lives before and/or afterwards provide seven short introductions to each one of the seven values of the games.  With each story there is a suggestion of how to use the story and the different Olympic/Paralympic values in Religious Education and some other subjects.  There are also some examples of how you can make School Assemblies with the Olympic and Paralympic Games as the theme.

For the best use of this book you should adapt each suggested lesson about one of the Olympic/Paralympic values to your own class or group or in other ways if you have a day or a whole week focussed entirely about the Olympic and Paralympic Games.  As always you need to plan your lesson and probably you need to get more information for making that possible.  The book gives examples of internet pages where you can find more information and some of these are suitable for use with the children.  This book is a really good introduction to discussing the Olympic/Paralympic values with children and hopefully through the discussions helps them see that sport is much more then just trying to be number one and winning the gold medal.  f

Micael Christoffer n/SSF


Prior to joining the First Order in September 2011, Brother Micael Cristoffer was employed as a pedagogue in the Church of Sweden.