Winter Olympics


There are eight different sports in the Winter Olympics: curling, ice hocky, speed skating, figure skating, luge, bobsledding, skiing and the biathlon.

Read more to learn about the games!

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There are two teams with four players each. A heavy stone is tossed onto the ice while two players run ahead sweeping the ice with brooms. They try to get the stone into a target dyed into the ice called a house. The size of the house is twelve feet. The closest stone gets a point. The other team tries to stop it.

Ice Hockey

Two teams of six players each skate on ice using sticks to try and get a hard round puck into the other team's net. One player called the goalie tries to protect the net. Each time the puck goes into the net, a point is scored. Each point is called a goal. The other team tries to take the puck away.

Speed Skating

There are both short track and long track competitions. The tracks are oval in shape. Four to six skaters compete at the same time on the short track. If you touch another skater, you could be disqualified. On the long track, speed skaters race in pairs. Everyone is always racing agains the clock to get the fastest time.

Figure Skating

Figure skating at the Olympics is divided into three sections. In "singles" the skater does an original program where they must do certain jumps and spins, etc. They also do "free style" where they may do whatever they like.

"Pairs" is the same as "singles," but you do it at hte smae time with a partner. Lifts are included.

"Ice dancing" is skated in paris, but there are no overhead lifts or jumps. Rhythm and musical meaning are emphasized.

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A luge looks like a sled with runners. Some races have on person on the luge and some have two people riding. They lay on their backs and slide down a twisting, ice-covered course. It is important to go as fast as you can because the one with the fastest time wins.
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THere are two or four person teams that sit in a sled and race downhill over a course of iced or snow. The teams "bob" by leaning back and then suddnely sitting upright again. Each sled makes four trips and the fastest total time wins.
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The athlete wears one ski and boot on each foot. The skis are made of hickory wood or metal and have sharp, steel edges. In some of the events the skier uses two aluminum poles. Skiers race downhill, or jump, or ski across the mostly flat country or do what is called "free style" with ballet jumps and leaps.
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Biathlon in Greek means two tests. The athletes carrying a rifle on their back must cross-country ski along a winding course.

At certain points they must stop and use their rifle to fire at a still target. If they miss the target, one minute is added to theri time. The one with the shortest time wins.

Winter Games Quiz!

1. How many sports are in the Winter Olympics?

2. Name the sport where brooms are used.

3. What is a point called in ice hockey?

4. Which sport has a competition where the athletes dance?

5. What is a luge?

6. What is the shape of the tracks used in Speed Skating?

7. Name 3 things that Olympics skiers must do?

8. What does "biathlon" mean?

Writing Activities

My Favorite Winter Olympic Sport

Pick an olympic Sport that you would like to compete in. Write about why you chose it and what you would do?

Olympic Flag

Design an Olympic flag.
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Olympic Symbol

Design a symbol that would stand for the Olympics.
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Olympic Medals

Design the three medals that would be given to the atheletes for first, second and third place.
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New Events

If you could add a sport to the Winter Olympics what would it be? Why did you choose it? How would it be played?

Olympic Pins

Collecting Olympic pins has become a big part of the games. People buy and trade pins. They try to get as many as they can.

Design a pin for each of the eight winter sports.

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Good Sportsmanship

Discuss what it means to be a "good sport." Write a paper explaining good sportsmanship. Be sure to give examples.
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