The Olympic torch stands as a symbol of the hopes and dreams of Olympic athletes and the eternal flame of the human spirit. Teachers can use this easily recognizable symbol as a central theme to their bulletin board. By integrating the torch into their bulletin board design, educators can inspire students to strive for success and work together as a team to accomplish a goal.
Olympic Torch Classroom Helpers
Pass the torch from student to student weekly as you assign new class helpers. Place student names on Olympic-style rings. Staple these rings to the classroom helpers bulletin board. Create cutouts of torches, or print torch images on cardstock. Label each torch with a classroom job, such as line leader or paper passer. Indicate student job assignments each week by placing the appropriately labeled torch in the student's Olympic ring. Move the torches weekly as job assignments rotate.
Use an Olympic torch bulletin board as a goal setting tool. Explain the concept of the Olympic torch to students, discussing the idea that the torch stands for the athlete's eternal drive to succeed. Tell students that, just like athletes, they will be more successful if they set a goal. Ask students to consider an academic goal that they could set. Create a board-size Olympic torch by drawing a torch freehand or projecting a torch image onto the surface with an overhead projector and tracing it. Allow students to color the flames and handle, encouraging them to take ownership of the torch.
Once the torch is completely decorated, provide the students with black markers and ask them to write their goals somewhere on the torch. Tell students that you will check their goals at the end of the quarter and determine if they have met them. As the academic quarter draws to a close, circle any goals that have been met. Reward the students who met their goals with an Olympic-themed prize.
Light the Reading Torch
Keep track of student reading with a "Light the Reading Torch" bulletin board. Create a torch handle on your bulletin board by drawing or tracing a handle. Use construction paper to create torch flames. Mix yellow, red and orange hues to create a lifelike flame to sit atop the handle. Once you have created your flames, cut them into ten equal size pieces, starting at the bottom and moving to the top.
Present the bulletin board to students, explaining that you will use the bulletin board to keep track of the number of books read as a class. Tell the students that, for every ten books read, the class will earn a part of the flames. Instruct students to write a paragraph summary of any book they read and turn it in to you to earn flame portions.
Once the class has read 100 books collectively and earned the entire set of torch flames, reward them with an Olympic themed party at which they can compete against each other in relays and trivia competitions.
- olympic rings image by Oleg Ivanov from Fotolia.com