Friday, July 27, 2012

Olympics Books for Kids- The Summer Games

I hope you all know the Olympics begin tonight. Hello London! Let's see what a fun show you have planned! I happen to love the Olympics.  I can clearly remember getting to stay up late in grade school to watch Katerina Witt skate to Carmen and win the gold medal.

It's just always been a big deal for me and I have been getting my kids pumped up for it too! So, in honor of the games, I've been scouring my local library for all the Olympics, athlete, summer sports books I can find. Here are some we're enjoying.
Hour of the Olympics is the 16th book in the Magic Treehouse series.  This time Jack and Annie travel to ancient Greece at the time of the Olympic games.

I Love Gymnastics(which seems to also be called Gymnastics School) fascinated Rainy. She was excited to see photos of kids doing things she practices in her own gymnastics class as well a lot of of things she's hoping to do someday.

Going for Gold includes photos and short excerpts about a variety of Olympics highlights.  There seem to be a lot of books that do this sort of thing, we liked this one because it's a leveled reader, so the text isn't as lengthy and it's easier to understand.
Elympics is a cute book full of poems about elephants competing in different Olympic events. It includes poems about both the summer and winter games.

Wilma Unlimited tells the amazing story of athlete Wilma Rudolph and how she went from being unable to walk to becoming an Olympic champion.

America's Champion Swimmer: Gertrude Ederle is not actually about the Olympics. (I couldn't get many on swimming, sadly). It does tell a story of triumph and perseverance as Gertude Ederle succeeded in swimming the English Channel.

The Mud Flat Olympics (which seems to be hard to buy) is about a quirky group of animals hosting their own Olympics. It includes events like snail hurdles and smelliest skunk-- pretty cute, I thought.
A Picture Book of Jesse Owens is an actual biography of his life and doesn't just focus on athletics as much as the other athlete books I've mentioned. His story is particularly intriguing because he competed in the games held in Germany during Hitler's reign.

Koala Lou is by our beloved Mem Fox. This is a sweet story of a little Koala who enters the bush games in order to win back her mama's love. But of course, her mama loved her all along.

Angelina and Alice shows our favorite ballerina trying her hand at gymnastics, which don't come as naturally as she hoped. Thanks to a little teamwork, things end up great.

Arthur's Birthday Party is one of Lilian Hoban's Arthur books. At his gymnastics party, Arthur plans to show his friends that he is the best gymnast. And, though things don't go exactly as he planned, everyone leaves a winner and they all enjoy pizza and cake together.  Too bad the real Olympics can't end that way.

Touch the Sky: Alice Coachman is another story of an athlete overcoming incredible odds. (These people and their determination is truly inspiring!) I enjoyed the fact that this one is written in verse. Also, the art really speaks to me for some reason.

Hopefully you'll be able to find a few of these. One more book I was really hoping to get my hands on? How to Train with a T. Rex and Win 8 Gold Medals (co-written by Micheal Phelps) but my library didn't have it.  If you know of anything else I've missed, please share.

Happy reading and let the games begin!!
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