For the fourth year in a row, the National Olympic Committee of Lithuania (LNOC) invited Lithuanian primary schoolchildren to take part in the Olympic Month project, which lasted throughout October.
As many as 2.7 thousand primary school classes, or more than 50 thousand primary schoolchildren across Lithuania exercised with Olympians, athletes and entertainers, learned the basics of healthy eating and cooked their own healthy meals together with famous chefs and nutritionists, learnt cooperation methods from Lithuanian sports teams, and deepened their knowledge of emotional health.
Having attracted a record number of participants, the project invited them to deepen their knowledge on physical activity, healthy eating, teamwork and emotional health.
“The word about the project is getting out and the value of the initiative is best described by the children themselves. We visited different schools every week of the project and asked children to share their impressions about what they had learned and experienced.
It is a delight to hear the children say that lettuce not only looks nice but also tastes good. Primary schoolchildren know that anger is an emotion that one needs to feel as well, and that it is important to trust friends because together, we can do more than on our own.
We are very grateful to the patron of the project Mrs Diana Nausėdienė for her great support, and to the athletes, whose stories, exercises and sincere conversations inspired the children. We also thank the dedicated educators and parents who, as always, were actively involved in the activities,” said Olympic champion and LNOC President Daina Gudzinevičiūtė.
Throughout the project, participants engaged in tailor-made activities developed by specialists, which they did during lessons, breaks and at home. Children were invited to play a variety of games chosen according to the topic of the week, track their physical activity, go on adventurous expeditions and learn about nutrients. They were also encouraged to assess their emotions on a daily basis and share them with their classmates, as well as to engage in other activities that appeal to primary school children. Each week, the children were accompanied by superheroes corresponding to the topic of the week.
As usual, as many as 22 Lithuanian Olympians and athletes got involved in the project activities and shared their experience, including Olympic canoe sprint athlete Henrikas Žustautas, Olympic canoe sprint athletes Mindaugas Maldonis and Andrejus Olijnikas, Olympic cross-country skier Mantas Strolia, and others.
“I am glad that I had the opportunity to contribute to the project and inspire the children, I think it is very important. Physical activity has given me the opportunity to see the world, I have made many friends through sport, therefore I am very happy to be able to pass on at least some of the inspiration to do sport to our little ones,” said Olympian and athlete Diana Zagainova.
The quadruple sculls athletes, the girls’ beach volleyball team, the girls’ ice hockey team, the players of the Vilnius Žalgiris football club and the players of the Rytas basketball club shared with the children their thoughts about the importance of teamwork and mutual trust.
The project is under the patronage of the country’s First Lady Diana Nausėdienė. The organisers of the project are the National Olympic Committee of Lithuania, the Ministry of Education, Science and Sport, and the Ministry of Health.