Monday, 17 September 2012

Quotes from the Paralympics

I think it's important we continue to celebrate the summer of sport, particularly the London 2012 Paralympics - and particularly so in schools where they can be used to challenge stereotypes from an early age and motivate students. We have created a display on our main corridor to do this, using quotes from the speech delivered by Stephen Hawking at the Paralympics Opening Ceremony. I have uploaded to TES the bits and pieces I've made for displays over the past year, which can be accessed here.

Below are some more inspirational quotes I've collected throughout the past week. These might be useful for assemblies or reflections during form / circle time. 

"If the Paralympics have accomplished anything it is confronting people with the abilities that disabled people have. It's also an indicator of progress. So many people have come here; they don't have to pay money to come and watch disabled people play sport. They are here because they want to be here, because they see it as a worthwhile event. I think that people were ready for the Paralympics," 

(Luke White, Paralympics wheelchair rugby star) 

“It was absolutely amazing and I think that the Paralympics has scrubbed out that line that there’s always been between disabled and able-bodied athletes,”

“All of the Paralympic and Olympic athletes were mixing and I think that the Games have stopped people looking at disabled athletes as just people with illnesses or disadvantages.” 

“I’ve already had so many messages from people saying that I’ve inspired them to get back in the pool or back on a horse and that’s just amazing. That’s always been the main goal and I’m so glad." 

(Stephanie Millward, winner of 5 medals in Paralympics swimming) 

"Paralympians have overcome so much - they have fantastic stories to tell.”

"Swimming saved my life - I don't know what I would have done if I hadn't been able to get in the water and compete.” 

"There might be others out there who don't reach Paralympic level but that is not the point.” "It is about giving you something. The Paralympics are giving people hope." 

(Margaret McEleny, former Paralympian and swimming coach) 

"I think this is going to inspire disabled children and adults to get into sport,"

"It is also amazing when able-bodied adults and children come up to me and say we've changed their perception of disabled people and inspired them to do sport as well.”

"We have the can-do factor, and us doing what we do I think inspires people to just try that little bit harder, whether they are able-bodied or disabled.” 

(Lee Pearson, Paralympics veteran and dressage star) 

I have grown up in a positive household. I’m a normal person, just a lot smaller. I get on with it. Everybody should do that. You only live once and you need to enjoy life, to go out and achieve whatever you want to.” 

(Ellie Simmonds, Paralympics teenage swimming sensation) 

“I think back to Ivan. As every parent, you think about all the things they can’t do, but at the Paralympics they are superhuman, you see all the things they can do.” 

(David Cameron, British Prime Minister) 

“Although we have many differences, there is one quality we all share, one thing all of us have in common: human spirit.” 

(L/Cpl Rory Mackenzie, Afghanistan War veteran and Paralympics Closing Ceremony participant) 

“We were watching human beings overcome what we had always assumed was a basic limitation of our species to break a barrier that was physically or psychologically insurmountable. We were watching a triumph of the human spirit…” 

(Boris Johnson, Mayor of London) 

"In this country we will never think of sport the same way and we will never think of disability the same way," 

"The Paralympians have lifted the cloud of limitation." 

(Sebastian Coe, Chairman of London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics Games committee) 

”My motivation, one of my motivations, is I truly believe I was meant to do this journey," 

"I want to do my nation and my family proud." 

(Martine Wright, 7/7 survivor and Paralympics volleyball star)

And last but not least, a fantastic Paralympics picture slideshow from BBC Magazine, with commentary from US broadcaster John Hockenberry.

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