Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Battle of the Books, Round 1

In 1994, when we moved to Michigan and Jessica was in the 5th grade, we were thrilled to hear of a new venture that the Schoolcraft librarian was beginning that year, called Battle of the Books.  Children in grades 4-6 formed teams, read books assigned by the librarian, and then took part in a sort of Quiz Bowl based on the books, with one team emerging victorious.  In the ensuing years, Jessica and Jordan both participated and I did some coaching, as well.  We added a lot of good books to our library during those years!

This year, I decided to offer something similar to the home school group at our church.  I tweaked it a bit to accommodate the families in the group, giving them two separate events: one for grades K-3 and one for grades 4-8.  Twelve children signed up for each battle, and they formed teams and began reading the books I assigned.

Last night, the Battle of the Books for the younger children took place.  I was a little nervous, mainly because I had no idea what to expect, never having done this before!  I was prepared with questions and more questions and back-up questions, just in case (oh, please, no, let it NOT happen) we ended up with a tie.  I had moral and score-keeping support from Jessica, and Terry helped with getting the microphones set up.  Allison and Terry took pictures.  (Jacob was planning to come but was sick)

I have to say, though, that it was a BLAST!  I thoroughly enjoyed myself and I think the kids did too, which is, of course, why it was so much fun for me.  

Here are some pictures of the participants:

After I asked each question, the teams would confer and give their response to the adult sitting with them, who would write it down on a small notepad.

Each team had to answer each question, but one child from one team would come to the microphone to give the answer out loud.  It was amusing to see how at the beginning, many of them did NOT want to do this - but after they had had a turn or two, they began to realize it was pretty cool, and after that, no prodding was necessary.

Besides the ending-with-a-tie issue, my only other concern was having the kids come up with an answer that was not what I wanted, but might still be valid.  We had one such question and my Moral Support and I (plus our runner, Cameron, responsible for collecting written answers from the teams after each question) spent some time going through the book to determine the correct response...

And congratulations to the winners!! (phew, no tie)

Battle of the Books, Round 2, will take place March 2!  I can't wait, and I'm already planning for next year, too!

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