Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Themed Reviews: World Cup

This summer all eyes will be on South Africa as they host the 2010 FIFA World Cup, an international soccer (football) tournament held every four years since 1930. This year marks the first time it has been held in an African nation.

Qualifying for the World Cup began back 2007 with 204 teams battling for thirty-two spots. From June 11th to July 11th watch these national teams compete for the title, beginning with the group stages, where the thirty-two teams are divided into groups of eight. The top two teams in each group then move on to the knockout stages, where sixteen teams work to advance to the quarters, semis, and then the final.

When you are watching the World Cup this summer you may see or hear about 1Goal, a partnership between FIFA and the Global Campaign for Education, that is "seizing the power of football to ensure that education for all is a lasting impact of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. By bringing together footballers and fans, charities and organizations around the world, together we can call on world leaders to make education a reality for 72 million children by 2015." ( Co-founder, Queen Rania of Jordan, author of The Sandwich Swap, hopes to have 30 million signatures by the end of the tournament to present to world leaders.

Though soccer does not have the same massive appeal in the US as it does worldwide the World Cup can still be a fun event to be apart of this summer. It can also be a "gateway" topic for children and teens—a way to get reluctant readers, or readers who tend to stick firmly to series sports novels, introduced to a variety of genres. Listed below are a number of books that are about, or incorporate, soccer, to share with your family or students.

The list of reviews can be found at:

For more information on the World Cup visit:

For articles on South Africa and the World Cup:

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