Olympic Character

Olympic Character – 7 Ways Our Olympians Inspire Children to Succeed


Nastia Liukin wins the all-around gymnastics gold by 6 tenths of a point. May and Walsh win 108 straight wins in beach volleyball. Micheal Phelps grabs another gold.

No matter what event you like, it’s difficult to watch the Olympics and not feel inspired. I find myself standing up, clapping, and shouting “go, go, go!” and “you can do it!” at the TV as the athletes do what they do best.

Kids can learn a great deal from our Olympians. These Olympians aren’t just everyday role models; they show is what character looks like when it’s put into action. They take all the best Powerful Words– from courage to indomitable spirit to discipline– and show us how to make use of them in daily life.

Here are some great ways to use the Olympics to start conversations about these all important Powerful Words:

1. Perseverance: How did [insert athlete’s name] show perseverance in competition today? How can you show perseverance when you’re participating in your favorite activity?

2. Discipline: What kind of discipline do you think it takes to become a member of an Olympic team? Where do you show discipline in your life?

3. Responsibility: What do you think are the responsibilities of an Olympic hopeful? What are some responsibilities that you must take on when you want to achieve your best?

4. Determination: Why do you think being determined is so important on our quest to reach our goals? What do you think [insert favorite athlete] had to do to stay determined throughout the last 4 years? When have you felt determined? Which goals have you achieved by using your determination?

5. Indomitable Spirit: Who do you think showed indomitable spirit during these Olympic Games? Which athletes kept going with all their effort when they weren’t “the favorite” or even when they were behind? How did that indomitable spirit pay off? When have you showed indomitable spirit in the face of challenge?

6. Respect: Why is it important for the Olympians to show respect to their competitors? How do you see the Olympians showing respect for themselves and their fellow athletes? How do they show that they are respectful, good sports when they are in front of the judges and the fans? How do you show respect to others each day?

7. Courage: When do you think these athletes really needed to use their courage? How do you think these athletes developed the courage to compete on the highest level? How do you think they stayed courageous even when they failed or fell? When do you show that kind of courage and how can you show even more?

The Olympics can be a great stepping stone to talk about your family’s values and well as what it takes to be the best in any area of interest. Now is a great time to talk about some amazing athletes and how your children can integrate what they see on their quest to become Olympians in life.

By Dr. Robyn Silverman


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