- Students will practice measuring distance.
- Students will appreciate the accomplishments of Olympic athletes.
- Stopwatch or watch that measures seconds
- Meter stick
- Walking measurement wheel (or other device to measure multiple yards)
- Gold medal results from Summer Olympics
- Paper and pencils
Select Olympic track events that you would like to measure.
Set up the race courses. Use the 2012 Gold Medal results below, or more recent results if available. Have students mark a starting point and then measure the distance of the event.
Label the finishing point (or the relay points) with stakes which identify the distance, the winning results, and the Gold Medal winner's name and country.
Have students participate in the events and compare their results to the Gold Medalists'.
Assign math problems comparing the student and medalists' results. Potential activities include: calculating the difference between the student and medalists' results, average the students' results, calculate the percent improvement students would need to achieve the results of the medalists.
2012 Men's Gold Medals
|100-meter dash||Usain Bolt, Jamaica||9.63 sec.|
|200-meter dash||Usain Bolt, Jamaica||19.32 sec.|
|400-meter relay (4X100)||Jamaica||36.84 sec.|
|Long jump||Greg Rutherford, Great Britain||27 ft. 3.17 in. (8.31 m)|
|16-lb Shot-Put||Tomasz Majewski, Poland||71 ft. 9.81 in. (21.89 m)|
|Discus Throw||Robert Harting, Germany||223 ft. 11.80 in. (68.27 m)|
2012 Women's Gold Medals
|100-meter dash||Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Jamaica||10.75 sec.|
|200-meter dash||Allyson Felix, United States||21.88 sec.|
|400-meter relay (4X100)||United States||40.82 sec.|
|Long jump||Brittney Reese, United States||23 ft. 4.31 in. (7.12 m)|
|16-lb Shot-Put||Valerie Adams, New Zealand||67 ft. 10.95 in. (20.70 m)|
|Discus Throw||Sandra Perković, Croatia||226 ft. 8.86 in. (69.11 m)|