John Paul II goes for gold

When the 2010 Winter Olympics begin next week, students from John Paul II Catholic School in Port Alberni will be watching with a different insight.

Students from John Paul II Catholic School in Port Alberni celebrate the sports of the 2010 Winter Olympics during the torch relay ceremonies at Bob Dailey Stadium, Nov. 1.

When the 2010 Winter Olympics begin next week, students from John Paul II Catholic School in Port Alberni will be watching with a different insight.

For the past two years, teacher Colleen Duncan has incorporated the values of the Olympic Games into her Grade 5 and 6 curriculum at John Paul II. She has invited past Olympians such as Alberni Valley wrestler Travis Cross and gold medal rower Adam Kreek to speak to her classes. She even had a representative from an Olympic committee from the Atlanta, Sydney and Salt Lake City games to speak in 2008.

She highlights many of Canada’s athletes in her lessons. “They’ve got great stories,” she says.

Using the Olympics as a building block for knowledge “lends itself to being the best that you can be. That means trying, never giving up, always striving to do your best,” she says.

“It’s also a time globally when everybody comes together. The differences aren’t highlighted; it’s sports and cultures, and striving for excellence. Often we get caught up in our own world and we don’t get past our backyard.”

Duncan’s enthusiasm for the Olympics peaked in February 2002 when she attended the opening ceremonies for the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics. “It was just amazing and moving,” she says. “It was the first one after 9/11 too, so it was quite powerful.”

On Nov. 1, 17 of Duncan’s students performed a “Parade of Sports, Olympic and Paralympic” during the torch relay celebrations at Bob Dailey Stadium. “I’ve seen what it does to the kids. They get excited, motivated…at some level there’s a piece of it they can connect to. I think it’s really powerful.”

“I am proud to say that the ‘glowing hearts’ of John Paul II Catholic School are living proof of the positive power of the Games.”

editor@albernivalleynews.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Canal Beach in Port Alberni open for swimming

Beach had been closed in July after high bacteria readings were detected in the water

North Island College offers resources for students learning online

College will hold a ‘virtual orientation’ this week

QUIZ: How much do you know about British Columbia?

On this B.C. Day long weekend, put your knowledge of our province to the test

Port Alberni company earns $10,000 grant from Canadian Chamber of Commerce

Company produces specialized equipment for large-scale mining, logging machinery

Bread of Life receives $10,000 donation from Western Forest Products

The donation will go towards COVID-19 community response

VIDEO: Otter pups learn to swim at B.C. wildlife rescue facility

Watch Critter Care’s Nathan Wagstaffe help seven young otters go for their first dip

Cooler days help crews fighting fire on mountainside southwest of Nanaimo

Firefighters making progress, but it’s ‘slow-going,’ says B.C. Wildfire Service

Crews work overnight to try to put out wildfire on Pender Island

Fire department and B.C. Wildfire Service crews extinguishing fire in ‘extremely difficult terrain’

Michael Buble among 13 British Columbians to receive Order of B.C.

Ceremony will be delayed to 2021 due to COVID-19

U.S. border communities feel loss of Canadian tourists, shoppers and friends

Restrictions on non-essential travel across the Canada-U.S. border have been in place since March 2`

Rollout of COVID-19 Alert app faces criticism over accessibility

App requires users to have Apple or Android phones made in the last five years, and a relatively new operating system

Alleged impaired driver sparks small wildfire near Lytton after crash: B.C. RCMP

Good Samaritans prevented the blaze from getting out of control

Most Read