Sunday, February 28, 2010

Tweens at the Winter Olympics in Vancouver

The Winter Olympics close today, and our tweens have enjoyed watching so much of it. Their favorites include Women's and Men's Snowboarding events, Ice Dancing, and the USA-Canada Hockey game going on right now. We have red-white-and-blue Jell-O stars chilling in the fridge now, and during the commercial breaks, we've been learning about how tweens have been involved in these Olympic games:

Sweeping up during Figure Skating: According to the Wall Street Journal, rarely has Vancouver seen such competition for litter collection: Vancouver chose 30 local children from among 135 who applied to be "flower sweepers." They dart onto the ice between performances, gracefully plucking up the debris in under two minutes, and then placing it into bags to hand over to the athletes.  Skaters competing here have been pelted with hundreds of items—plush hearts, framed photographs of fans and even plastic toy potatoes. In the audition, the kids had to prove they had sufficient speed, as well as the ability to stop on a dime. Most of the selected kids are tween-age, and it's not all hard work: the kids have witnessed the best skating in the world from an unparalleled vantage point: center ice - only judges and coaches have better seats. As an added benefit, they receive uniform/costumes with the Vancouver Olympics logo, and the girls outfits are bedazzled with over 8000 sequins.

Tween reporter covers the Games: Our tweens have been avidly following the Time For Kids reporter Brennan LaBrie's coverage of the Olympics. At eleven years of age, Brennan is the youngest reporter to cover the games. He's been working in news for several years before becoming a TFK reporter - he ran a kid newspaper in his hometown in Washington State. His updates on Twitter have been a lot of fun to read - you can follow him at

Check out the wunderkid's interview with Gold Medalist Apolo Ohno:


Photo credit: European Pressphoto Agency

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