Today marks the beginning of the 2010 World Cup games … which may not a lot to most North Americans. World Cup soccer, however, is a Big Deal here in South Korea. Games are broadcast on giant television screens at subway stations, stadiums, and other public locations all over the nation. In fact, it seems that half the country is wearing red and cheering Team Korea onto victory with the words “Dae Han Min Guk!”
While we’re not huge sports fans and won’t be joining the throngs who are standing out in the rain to watch the televised Korean games, I do plan to use the games as a springboard to help my students learn more about world geography. We’ll be locating each of the 32 countries participating in this year’s World Cup games on a map. We’ll match flags with their respective countries, and we’ll group countries according to continent. We’ll also sound out the names of the various countries participating in this year’s games and practice writing them in English.
If you’d like to bring World Cup fever into your classroom, you can download the World Cup 2010 word search and country-continent match I created for our elementary students by clicking here.