Check out the two images of the 2008 summer Olympic medal counts. What do you notice?
How are the Olympic medal counts and standings determined?
The Olympic Games are competitions between athletes in individual or team events and are not meant to be between countries. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) does not recognize global ranking per country. However, the National Olympic Committee (NOC) does give rankings based on the number of medals won. News organizations from around the world do release an Olympic medal table, sometimes with possible bias and controversy.
This activity is about determining the fairest ranking method. In this activity students consider how the Olympic medal table, which shows the total Olympic medal count by country, should be determined. Students might create formulas to consider the relative value of a gold, silver and bronze medal. Past formulas for calculating the medal table standings from various Olympic games are analyzed and used.
You can lead your class through the discussion with this free movie. You will have to pause the movie between each slide until you are ready to continue the discussion. Or members can use our PowerPoint presentation below.
For members we have a PowerPoint presentation of the above movie (The PowerPoint is easier to control) and solutions.
The following CCSS can be addressed: 5.OA.1, 5.OA.2, 6.EE.2, 6.EE.6, 7.EE.3
Check out all of our activities at our Bird's Eye View page.
Or, other Olympic posts: Which events do you like to watch?