The Olympic Games, Global, Multi-sport Competition

Let’s read and speak about the Olympic Games.

Level A2/B1

Read Some Interesting Facts about Olympic Games

  • The first Olympic Games took place in 776BC. The original Olympics began as part of an Ancient Greek festival, which celebrated Zeus, the Greek God of sky and weather. The whole competition lasted for up to six months, and included games like wrestling, boxing, long jump, javelin, discus and chariot racing.
  • In 393 AD, the Olympic Games were cancelled and didn’t start up again for over 1,500 years!
  • Emperor Theodosius I, a Roman ruler, banned the Greek Olympics due to the religious element of the celebration. He considered the Olympics to be a pagan festival, which had no place in his Christian country.
  • In 1896, a man named Baron Pierre de Coubertin started a revival of the Games. He called this new event the ‘modern Olympics’.
  • The Olympic torch is a reminder of the Games’ Greek origins. In ancient times, a flame burned throughout the Games as a tribute to the goddess, Hestia. Since 1928, this tradition has continued in the modern Games, but instead of an altar, the flame burns in a special torch. The torch flame is always lit by the sun in Olympia, Greece, as this is where the first Greek Games were held. Then, it’s passed from torch to torch in a massive international relay that ends in the host city – wow! New torches are designed for each Olympics, and several thousand copies are made. It’s a great honour to become a torchbearer, and lots of inspiring people get a turn each time. Lit Olympic torches have flown on planes, stayed alight underwater, and scaled Everest! Some unlit torches have even gone into space, too.


Olympic Games Word List

compete – змагатися
competition – змагання
competitor/ competer – конкурент, суперник
competitive – змагальний
throw (threw, thrown) – кидати, метати
throwing events – змагання з метання
discus / javelin/ hammer throw – метання диска / списа / молота
shot put – штовхання ядра
an olive wreath – оливковий вінок
honour – шана; шанувати
revival – відродження
represent – представляти
motto – девіз
Swifter, Higher, Stronger – швидше, вище, сильніше
the symbol of the unity – символ єдності
background – фон
mascot – талісман
character – образ, герой
creature – створіння
spirit – дух
take place – відбуватися
take part – брати участь
light (lit/lighted, lit/lighted) – запалювати
ancient Greece – стародавня Греція
flame – полум’я
a torch – факел
the opening ceremony – церемонія відкриття
put out – гасити
Paralympic Games – Паралімпійські ігри
athletes with a disability – спортсмени з інвалідністю
are held – проводяться
due to – завдяки
an event of universal meaning – подія загальнолюдського значення
struggle for – боротися за
the chance to host – можливість приймати гостей
whole – цілий, увесь
support – підтримувати

Speak about the Olympic Games

  1. The Olympic Games have a very long history.
  2. They began more than two thousand years ago in Greece.
  3. The best athletes took part in the Games competing in running, jumping, wrestling and throwing the discus.
  4. The winners in each kind of sport got an olive wreath which was the highest honour.
  5. For a long time there were no Olympic Games.
  6. Since 1896 the best athletes of the world have met again every four years, as it was in Greece many, many years ago.
  7. The revival of the modern Olympic Games in modern history is connected with the name of Pierre de Coubertin, who has found International Olympic Committee.
  8. There are Summer and Winter Olympic Games now.
  9. The best sportsmen from all over the world compete in different sports.
  10. All sportsmen are proud to represent their country.
  11. The motto of the Olympic Games is: SWIFTER, HIGHER, STRONGER.
  12. The Games have a lot of symbols.
  13. The five rings on the Olympic flag are the symbol of the unity of five continents.
  14. They are of five colours – red, yellow, blue, green and black – on a white background.
  15. The Olympic mascot is a character that represents the country where the Olympic Games take place.
  16. It is usually an animal or a creature.
  17. The best athletes in each sports event get medals: gold for the first place, silver for the second place and bronze for the third place.
  18. However, the most important thing about the games is not to win, but to take part.
  19. The tradition to light the Olympic flame comes from ancient Greece.
  20. A torch is lit at Olympia in Greece and sportsmen carry it across the world to the city where the new Olympic Games take place.
  21. The Olympic flame is lit during the opening ceremony and it is put out on the last day of the games.
  22. The Paralympic Games are the games for athletes with a disability.
  23. They are held every four years in the same year as the Olympic Games.
  24. They are parallel to the Olympic Games and that is where their name comes from.
  25. Modern Olympic Games due to the television have become an event of universal meaning and a serious business
  26. Countries struggle for the chance to host the Olympics on their territories.
  27. People of the whole planet watch the Olympic reports and support their favourite sportsmen.
  28. Many people became the winners of the Olympics and they are honoured in their countries.