SLS Hosts Middle School Geography Bee

Many of us at St. Luke’s have become accustomed to attending after-school basketball or soccer games, both at home and away. The games have become a welcome staple of our afternoons, a relaxing way to reconnect with our friends and support our school after a long day of classes. However, we Upper-School students often take for granted the support that the Middle School provides at our athletic games. Why should we not come and support them in return, at both athletic and academic events?

            Today, January 19th, from 11:15 to 12:15 in the PAC, the Middle School Geography Bee is taking place. This event is sponsored by National Geographic, and the winners from our school will have the opportunity to participate in the State and possibly the National Bee. The Sentinel sat down with Ms. Ostrer, the faculty advisor of this event, to learn a little more about it.

Sentinel: Can you give us some basic information about the MS Geography Bee, for those of us who don’t know about it?

Meredith Ostrer: National Geographic runs the Middle School Geography Bee, for students in grades 4 through 8. The way it works is first there is a School Level Bee, whose winner goes to the State Level Bee. The State Level Bee is much more completive with coaches, etc. Eventually, if you win the State Level Bee, you can go to the National Geography Bee. The winner of the National Geography Bee is rewarded with a $ 25,000 scholarship and an exotic trip. A recent winner won a trip to the Galapagos Islands. St. Luke’s has participated in the bee on and off over the past few years, but now it’s back!

S: What’s the format – the different levels? How does it conclude?

MO: There are the School, State, and then the National Bees, but there are a few different levels within the School Bee itself. First you have classroom bees for grades 5 and 6, whose winners are part of the School Bee (7th and 8th graders can meet with me to qualify). The winner of the School Bee takes a written test, which then is sent to National Geographic. I hope that more and more grades will try and perhaps will qualify in years to come, as no 8th graders have tried out this year.

 S: What dates are the different rounds, and when will the finals take place?

MO: The School Level Bee takes place on Thursday, January 19th, from 11:15 to 12:15 in the PAC. The written test for the winner will be given on January 31st.

 S: What do you hope the children will learn from this competition? Why would you encourage other middle schoolers to compete?

MO: I hope that as we continue to do this, we will attract more competitors. We want students to be excited about geography and foster a interest in it, because it’s a lifelong tool you can use anywhere. Also, it allows our school to cheer for a wider rang of kids and a wider ranger of talents. It’s important that we encourage academic talents as much as we do, say, athletic talents.

            For a school so invested in creating a student body with a diverse set of talents and interests, it seems only right that St. Luke’s shows more interest in the academic endeavors that our students take part in. Support your talented peers by sitting in on the MS Geography Bee on Thursday in the PAC.

~Khush Dhaliwal and Maria Juran, Staff Writers     

Posted by on January 19, 2012. Filed under School News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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