In the News - Olympic torch lit

The Olympic flame was blown out yesterday in an unconventional start to the lighting of the Olympic torch - the final countdown for the London 2012 Games. 

In the news

Olympic torch lit


The Olympic flame was unexpectedly blown out last Thursday in an unconventional start to the final countdown for the London 2012 Games.

The lighting of the Olympic torch took place, as is traditional, at the Temple of Hera in Olympia, but strong winds meant the torch went out soon after being lit. Despite the setback, the flame was soon relit and passed on to Liverpool-born Greek swimming world champion Spiros Gianniotis for the first leg of its 79-day journey. In Greek mythology, the original torch bearer was Prometheus, the Titan who stole fire from gods to give to humans. Carrying the torch became symbolic of man’s awareness of his own divinity and represented his aspiration to become a god. Ancient Greeks believed that fire was a tiny spark of the sun and, to symbolise this, the Olympic flame is always lit by the sun at the temple.

Did you know? This isn’t the first time that Great Britain has had a false start at the Olympic starting block. When London hosted the games in 1948, the flame also went out.



Related resources


Prometheus’ problems

  • Introduce pupils to a Titan tale with this quick, pictorial presentation about the iconic Greek.

An Olympic journey

  • Get_Set_For_London2012 shares a handy guide to torch relay traditions. .

Mythic proportions

  • From Minotaurs to Gorgon’s heads, explore the myths of Ancient Greece with the TES collection.

London 2012

  • Still looking for sporty inspiration for the summer term? Try the range of resources in the London 2012 collection.

Further news resources


First News front page

  • Help your pupils understand the features of the front page of a newspaper.

Write all about it

  • Get students creating their own news report with this step-by-step guide

What is the News?

  • A sociological and media perspective on what makes an event 'newsworthy'.

On the box

  • Help pupils to write their own TV news broadcast with this handy PowerPoint.

Structuring stories

  • A scheme of work to help students structure news stories.

In the news this week


Bills aimed at strengthening the economy will be the focal point of the coalition government’s work over the next year, according to the Queen’s Speech.

British and World 400m hurdles champion Dai Greene races an 80 mph train in a shocking new advert from Network Rail.

Francois Hollande will be France’s first Socialist president in 17 years, after winning the final round of the Presidential elections on Sunday.

The race for London mayor came to a close, with incumbent Boris Johnson looking likely to win a second term.