Teaching Students About the 2016 Olympics Host

The Olympics is an event that brings together the world’s best athletes every four years. But did you know that the host city itself plays a crucial role in the success of the games? In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the host cities of the 2016 Olympics, Rio de Janeiro and Tokyo, and explore how educators can incorporate the games’ history and significance into their curriculum.

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, hosted the 2016 Summer Olympics, marking the first time the event was held in South America. Known for its vibrant culture and stunning natural beauty, the city welcomed athletes and spectators from around the world.

For educators, Rio offers an opportunity to explore Brazilian culture, history, and politics. Students can learn about the challenges facing Brazil as a developing country, such as poverty, environmental degradation, and political corruption. They can also delve into the history of Rio, including its colonial past, the growth of the favelas (shantytowns), and the city’s role as a hub of Brazilian music, dance, and athletics.

In addition, Rio’s hosting of the Olympics was not without controversy. Some criticized Brazil’s government for using public funds to build expensive stadiums and infrastructure while neglecting the needs of the vulnerable and marginalized populations. Educators can facilitate a discussion about the ethics of hosting global events like the Olympics and how to balance the needs of different communities.

Tokyo, Japan
After Rio, Tokyo, Japan, was slated to host the 2020 Summer Olympics, but the event was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Nonetheless, the city remains an important host city and offers much to explore for educators and students.

As a bustling metropolis, Tokyo embodies the energy and innovation of modern Japan. But the city also has a rich history and culture that dates back centuries. Educators can use Tokyo as a gateway to learning about Japanese history, art, cuisine, and society.

Tokyo’s hosting of the Olympics is also notable because it marks the second time the city has been selected as the host city (the first time was in 1964). Students can explore how the city has changed and evolved since then, as well as the preparations and challenges involved in hosting a major international event like the Olympics.

Integrating Olympics History and Significance into Curriculum
Whether your students are studying history, geography, culture, or current events, the Olympics can be a valuable lens through which to view the world. Here are some ideas for integrating Olympics content into your curriculum:

– Have students research the host city and country, exploring its history, culture, and political landscape.

– Watch footage of the opening and closing ceremonies with students, discussing the symbolism and meaning behind the performances.

– Use the Olympics as a jumping-off point for discussions about social justice, human rights, and economic inequality.

– Have students research and present on Olympic athletes, exploring their backgrounds, training regimens, and experiences.

Bringing the Olympics into the Classroom
The Olympics are more than just a sporting event; they offer a unique window into the cultures and histories of host cities and nations. By incorporating Olympics content into your curriculum, you can help your students develop their global awareness, critical thinking skills, and appreciation for the world around them.

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