Academic Team Competitions

To the members of Grenada High School’s Academic Team, there is no trivia too trivial. Presidential birthplaces and terms of office, river lengths and origins, the uses of adverbial clauses, math, science, history - you get the idea. The team has competed in two competitions this year, one at Madison Central High School and another at Mississippi Delta Community College.  Competition format mirrors that of the old television College Bowl quiz bowls.  Four person teams from different schools meet head to head in ten to fifteen minute rounds.  A moderator, usually a teacher or graduate student usually poses the questions, depending on where the location of the event.  The students hit buzzers to signal that they know the answer. If they answer correctly, they get points, if they answer incorrectly, the other team gets a chance to steal. 

The pace is fast with questions that range from “You’ve got to be kidding me” easy, to “Who in the world knows that!?”  Invariably, someone probably DOES know that dud to the fact that all the contestants are extremely intelligent and well-versed in several topics.

 The students on the GHS team have a wide range of interests and expertise.  John Austin Cook and Taylor Vance rule the government and current events area while Mitchell Sones and Dylan Teas seem to know something about everything.  Paige Porter and Tiara Watson focus on math, with Jarvis Benson on literature.   AJ Forrest, Sarah Kate Griffin, Tristan Crockett, Sydney Taylor, Peyton Porter, Josh Savage, Tarilyn Elliot, Jan Guiliumbo, Kristin Thomas, and Kasia Hayes all add to the knowledge.

During a competition, the four member teams cannot confer on any answers except bonus rounds, so confidence is as necessary as knowing your subject matter.  In order to sit on stage in front of 15 other schools, commit to an answer, and call it out, these students must have confidence in their own personal knowledge as well as confidence in their team members.  Nerves run high during the first few rounds, but once the initial jitters subside, the desire to win takes over.

The team usually practices once a week in sponsor Mrs. Laura Barfield’s room and consists of lots and lots and LOTS of questions. Members are also encouraged to remember everything they read, hear, watch…. again, you get the idea.  Below are examples of questions from recent competitions attended by the GHS Academic Team.  Could you stand up to the challenge?
1. Which U.S. national park is the oldest located east of the Mississippi River? ANSWER:  Acadia National Park

2. Identify the noble gas, discovered in 1898 from the residue of liquid air, that has an atomic number of 54. ANSWER:  Xenon
3. (Math): The hypotenuse of a 30-60-90 degree triangle is 14 cm long. Find the perimeter of the triangle. Be sure to include the correct units. ANSWER:  21 + 7 radical 3 cm

4. With regard to television display, what is the meaning of the acronym ―HD? ANSWER:  High Definition

5. In Jane Austen‘s Pride and Prejudice, which important family includes five unmarried daughters? ANSWER:  The Bennett family

6. During World War II, his nickname was ―Old Blood and Guts‖. Who was this famous American General whose film biography won the Academy Award for Best Picture in 1970? ANSWER:  George S. Patton

7. Translate the Spanish word ―suerte‖ (swear tay) into English. ANSWER:  luck

8. Identify the metric equivalent of the U.S. unit of horsepower. ANSWER:  watt

9. Which eleven-letter adjective is used before the word ―mark to refer to any of several notations above or below a letter in word to indicate pronunciation? ANSWER:  diacritical (mark)

10. (Math): Find the limit as x approaches infinity of 1/x. ANSWER:  0

Stephanie Raper
In the Loop Editor