Learn about America's great athlete, Jesse Owens with sports, spreadsheets and a movie. This mini-unit study is a sample of the Famous Birthdays Online Unit Study.

Sports, Spreadsheets and the Big Screen: Learning About Jesse Owens

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We've got Olympic fever at our house. After two weeks of watching the 2016 Rio Summer Olympics, our whole family has been inspired by the dedication of the Olympians we've cheered on. And I wanted my children to know about one of America's most well-known athletes, Jesse Owens. That's why I chose to celebrate Owens as one of the September birthdays in the Famous Birthdays Online Unit Study.

But, no celebration is fun if you do it alone, so I'm sharing the Jesse Owen's lesson from the Famous Birthdays Online Unit Study with you…

Preview 5 homeschool lessons from Online Unit Studies  

Learn about America's great athlete, Jesse Owens with sports, spreadsheets and a movie. This mini-unit study is a sample of the Famous Birthdays Online Unit Study.

Learning About Jesse Owens

“We all have dreams.
In order to make dreams come into reality,
it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline and effort.”

– Jesse Owens

Jesse Owens made his dreams a reality and gave hope to many people. To learn about this great athlete, read Jesse Owens on Epic!. (You'll need to register to access the ebook..and the thousand other ones…but you can get a free trial for 30 days)

For a less in-depth studyCLICK HERE to read Owen's biography and to discover his achievements at Ducksters.com.

Which of Owens' achievements do you think is most admirable? Leave a comment below.

Jesse Owens is well-known for pursuing his dreams in the face of discrimination, especially in the 1936 Olympic games in Berlin.  CLICK HERE to watch a PBS American Experience video and learn more about the controversy around Owens' participation in those Olympics.

Now, grab the popcorn and stream the movie “Race” on Amazon. This film is PG-13, so be sure to filter objectionable parts. After watching, discuss these questions with your family.

  • Why was participating in the Olympics a difficult decision for Jesse?
  • Why was it significant that Jesse demonstrated excellence in the 1936 Olympic Games?
  • “Excellence” develops from doing something extremely well. Do you have excellence in you? Do you demonstrate that excellence?
  • How would your life and the lives of others be changed if you did everything with excellence?

PROJECT: Graphing Track and Field World Records

Jesse Owens set many world records. Just at the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, he equaled the world record (10.3 seconds) in the 100-meter race and broke the world records in the 200-meter race (20.7 seconds) and in the broad jump (26 feet 5 3/8 inches).

For your project, you will examine two of those records in more detail and create spreadsheets showing the progression of the world records.

SUPPLIES NEEDED:

  • Google Drive account
  • Track and Field World Records spreadsheet template. Sign up below and select “Make a Copy” to save the sheet to your Google Drive. If you are not prompted to “Make a Copy”, select the “File” pull-down menu when it opens, then “Make a Copy”.  

Instructions:

  • Click where it says “Copy of Track and Field World Records” (upper left) and edit to a title you want.
    • See the two tabs on the bottom? You will start with the “Long Jump” worksheet.
  • Click the “Long Jump” tab at the bottom of the page to open the worksheet. CLICK HERE to visit About Sports to read the history of the men's long jump world records. As you read, record data in the gray cells for each new world record.
    • In column A, record the jump distance in meters. Notice that it converts to feet and inches in column B.
    • In column C, record the athlete's name
    • In column D, record the year the record was set.
    • Examine the graph you created to see the progression of the Men's Long Jump World Record.
  • Click the “100-meter” tab at the bottom to open the second worksheet. CLICK HERE to visit About Sports to read the history of the men's 100 meter world records. As you read, record data in the gray cells for each new world record.
    • In column A, record the record time
    • In column B, record the athlete's name
    • In column C, record the year the record was set.
    • Examine the graph you created to see the progression of the Men's Long Jump World Record.

Are you curious about any other world records? VISIT THIS PAGE to read the about the progression of other track and field events. You can create a duplicate of your worksheets and edit for new events.

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If your family enjoys biography unit studies, check out the Famous Birthdays Online Unit Study.

Learn about two famous people born each month with Online Unit Studies. This homeschool curriculum integrates multiple subjects for multiple ages of students. Access websites and videos and complete digital projects. With Online Unit Studies’ easy-to-use E-course format, no additional books and print resources are needed. Just gather supplies for hands-on projects and register for online tools.

Jesse Owens' birthday is September 12. Find more September birthday lessons at iHomeschool Network's Birthday Lessons in September.

September

CLICK HERE to find more movie-inspired unit studies

 

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