The inspirational and little-known story of a dedicated teacher who coached Hawaiian swimmers all the way to the Olympics, beautifully told in simple rhyme.When the children of workers on a 1930s Maui sugar plantation were chased away from playing in the nearby irrigation ditches, local science teacher Soichi Sakamoto had an idea. He offered to take responsibility for the children — and then he began training them how to swim. Using his science background, Sakamoto devised his own innovative coaching techniques: he developed a strict practice regime for the kids, building their strength and endurance by using the ditch water’s natural current. The children worked hard under the dedicated Sakamoto’s guidance, and their skills improved. They formed a swim club and began to dominate in swimming events around the world.
The Middle Grade Memoir of a Girl Boxer and Future Olympian. In this Lean-In style inspirational memoir, twelve-year-old Jesselyn Silva offers a ringside seat to girl power and what it takes to win in the ring and in life: punch by punch. Girl Boxer shows kids what it means to be true to yourself and stick with your dreams even when facing adversity and ridicule. Supported by her single dad, Jesselyn (JessZilla in the ring) first donned her boxing gloves at five years of age, making her one of very few female boxers in the country. Girl Boxer charts Jesselyn’s oft times exhilarating and heartbreaking journey to success in a male dominated sport where she struggles to find partners to spar with and combats the viewpoint that no one wants to see a girl fight. Despite an inhospitable environment, Jesselyn still has her sights set on the Olympics. With the help of her very dad, Pedro, who has instilled in her a strong work ethic, she just might make it. It is an exciting and motivational read that will provide kids with the roadmap and encouragement to accomplish whatever goals they set for themselves. Jesselyn’s positive can-do attitude and determination make this a must read.
Navigate your way through a fantastic range of subjects with this visually spectacular new series. Every spread is brimming with lively text, amazing photographs and artworks, and weblinks and quotes. Panels throughout offer focused information on specific topics. Ancient Greece was one of the greatest civilizations the world has ever known, and this book is an eye-popping introduction to the historical, cultural and intellectual legacy of this important culture. Young readers can climb aboard an Athenian trireme at war, plunge into the bloody conflict with Troy, see how the famous gods of Olympus were worshipped, watch traditional Greek theatre, and learn from some of the greatest scientific, artistic and philosophical minds of all time. Special features and links highlight contemporary websites, books and film that draw on the same content, creating connections for further exploration.
Duke Kahanamoku was the twentieth century’s top waterman, and is known as the “father of international surfing.” The first Hawaiian to win an Olympic gold medal, Duke represented the United States in the Olympic Games in 1912, 1920, 1924 and 1932, winning gold, silver and bronze medals. Born in 1890, Duke grew up next to the ocean in Waikîkî. After school, he and his sister and brothers would hit the water. “I was only happy when I was swimming like a fish,” Duke said. Duke and the other beach boys gathered under a hau tree in Waikîkî. They rode the waves at Castles, a prime surf spot, on their sixteen-foot solid wooden surfboards. Years of swimming, surfing and canoe paddling made Duke a fine athlete. He had a strong body, long arms, powerful legs and his hands were said to be as big as buckets. Some claimed he had feet as big as fins and could steer a canoe with his feet alone. Duke knew that he was a very fast swimmer and he trained constantly. He said that God had given him a gift and a whip. “The whip,” he said with a grin, “is to flog myself into getting the most out of the gift.” He felt that, just maybe, he could be a champion and win Olympic gold for Hawai‘i. His chance came August 12, 1911, at Alakea Slip in Honolulu Harbor, when he demolished the world amateur record for the 100-yard freestyle. His excitement was crushed when mainland AAU officials refused to believe his time. “What are you using for stopwatches over there in Hawai‘i?” they asked. “Alarm clocks?” The AAU officials doubted that a virtually untrained swimmer could break a world record. It was up to Duke to prove he could go up against the world’s fastest swimmers and beat them. Along with his athletic accomplishments, Duke is remembered for his concern for others, humility in victory, courage in adversity and good sportsmanship.
The true story of Hawaiian Duke Kahanamoku, six-time Olympic swimming champion and legendary surfer who popularized surfing around the world.
Recounts the story of the Olympics held in Berlin in 1936, and how the Nazis attempted to turn the games into a propaganda tool for their cause.