It’s Greek to Me

At Summer Academy, you don’t have to wait four long years. The Olympics are a yearly event.

Students in It’s Greek to Me set up and practiced their Olympic events today in preparation for the competitions. “We’re making a tennis ball shooter game,” said Devan as he unwound inches of thick gray duct tape. He used the tape to attach a colorful hula hoop to the banister on a stairway. Olympic athletes will use a tennis ball shooter to shoot balls through the series of hoops, earning points for every hoop cleared.

“I have an Olympic event, too,” Devan’s helper Peter said as he led us to his game area. On the floor were four orange tape strips positioned about 6 feet apart. Peter stood at the first orange tape line and tossed a cash register paper roll forward on the floor. “You roll one of these from the start,” he said, “and see how far it goes. You get points for how far it rolls.”

Oliver’s group had two games planned. “One is a shield game – who can make a shield the fastest,” he said.

Riley held up a length of paper towel rolls taped together. “And this is a bow for an archery game,” he explained.

“Yeah, we’re making a gigantic bow,” added Mac.

Jaydan consulted from the sidelines. “We need more tension in the bow,” he advised. “You don’t want it too loose.”

Riley and Mac attached a piece of black string to the bow and Mac pulled it back. “Perfect tension,” Riley concluded. 

Elly and Josie used thick plastic straws to guide balls through a maze. “It’s like the maze in the Minotaur and the Labyrinth!” said Josie. 

“It’s called the Ping Pong Blow Race and you have to use your straw to blow your ball through the maze,” Elly explained. 

Elly and Josie said they learned interesting things about the original Greek Olympics. “I know running was a big part of it,” Elly said. 

“And, married women weren’t allowed into the Olympics. If they tried they would push them off a cliff,” Josie related. 

Adriana’s event was a Greek version of the game Monopoly. “There’s a different name for things, like Greek cities, gods and goddesses,” she said. “Like instead of a Jail, we have Tartarus.”

Tartarus, explained Vivian, “is the eternal pit of darkness. A Greek jail for monsters.”