June 21st, 2018

Lakeview gets into Olympic spirit

By Lethbridge Herald on February 12, 2018.

Grade 1 student Kohen Iwaasa and kindergartener Jouri Mahmoud chase after the ball in a game of hockey between "Team Canada" and "Team Korea" Monday during Winter Olympics Day at Lakeview Elementary School. Herald photo by Ian Martens @IMartensHerald

Ian Martens
Lethbridge Herald
As Team Canada continues to rack up the medals in Pyeongchang, Lakeview Elementary School joined in the action with a day of their very own Winter Olympics.
Students kicked off their Olympic event Monday with an opening ceremony filled with cheering, songs, performances, a torch lighting and inspirational messages.
The inspiration included the chance to see two authentic Olympic medals. A Team Finland hockey bronze won in Lillehammer by Mikko Makela was displayed by his daughter, Sophia, a former Lakeview student. A curling bronze won in Turin by Shannon Kleibrink was brought in for the ceremony by her nieces and current Lakeview students Kaitlyn and Makayla Doyle.
Classes were assigned one of four countries to represent in the day of activity and exercise, including Canada, Korea, Great Britain and the United States.
“One of the secrets to a happy child is exercise. Exercise is great for the brain, it’s great for the body, the mind, the soul, the spirit,” said Grade 4 teacher Marlin Howg.
The games also give the students the chance to experience Olympic aspects such as unity, opportunity and equality said Howg.
“It just is so exciting for us to support our Canadian Olympians who have athleticism and have worked so hard over the years in their training.”
While the cold weather had postponed the event’s original date last week ahead of the start of the actual games in Korea, it did little to diminish the students’ enthusiasm as they took part in activities such as hockey, torch runs and indoor versions of curling and speedskating.
“They’ve been really practising the sports and getting excited about it for probably a couple weeks now,” said Grade 1 teacher Shanda McKnight, who helped organize the day.
The event was held as authentic as could be for an elementary school Olympics, ending with a closing ceremony and the awarding of medals for the teams’ performance in the games.
Among all the fun and activity of the day, McKnight also pointed out the importance of the deeper Olympic meaning.
“What you learn as an Olympian and in sport mirrors what you learn in life and how you are as a person. It teaches morals and values and hard work and dedication and commitment,” she said. “That’s something we teach our students everyday and teaching it within the Olympic spirit is such a great way to share that message.”
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