Today’s Wonder of the Day was inspired by Anthony. Anthony Wonders, “Does the Olympic Flame ever go out” Thanks for WONDERing with us, Anthony!
Have you ever watched the Olympic Games? Do you have a favorite event? One of the most-watched parts of the Olympics isn’t a sport at all. It’s the opening ceremony! If you’ve ever tuned in for this event, you saw the lighting of the cauldron with the Olympic flame.
The flame is one of the most important symbols of the Olympic Games. It represents the fire Prometheus stole from the Greek god Zeus. In fact, the tradition of lighting a flame started in ancient Greece. Back then, organizers of the games kept a flame burning throughout the events.
The Olympic torch relay is an even more modern event. It began in 1936 before the Summer Olympics in Berlin. Today, the torch relay starts in Greece. From there, it carries the Olympic flame around the world. The relay ends at the site of that year’s Olympic Games. There, the flame is used to light the cauldron during the opening ceremony.
Does the Olympic flame ever go out? Some legends hold that it has been kept burning ever since the first Olympic Games. In truth, it is relit a few months before each new Olympic Games.
Many see the Olympic flame as a symbol of the life and competitive spirit of the Olympic Games. In that sense, one could say that the flame never goes out. People all around the world wait anxiously for the coming of each new Olympic Games.
During the torch relay, the Olympic flame is usually carried by runners. However, over time, it has also been transported in some other interesting ways. In 1948, the flame crossed the English Channel on a boat. In 1952, it flew in an airplane to Helsinki, Finland.
Perhaps the most interesting method of carrying the flame was used in 1976. That year, the Olympic flame was turned into a radio signal. It was sent from Athens via satellite to Canada. It then triggered a laser beam that was used to relight the flame.
The Olympic flame has also traveled by canoe, camel, and Concorde. It was even carried underwater by divers at the Great Barrier Reef in 2000. People have come up with many creative ways to carry the flame. How would you help it reach its destination?
Standards: CCRA.L.3, CCRA.L.6, CCRA.R.1, CCRA.R.2, CCRA.R.4, CCRA.R.10, CCRA.SL.1, CCRA.W.2, CCRA.L.1, CCRA.L.2