Saint Kentigern Girls Triumph at Kids' Lit Quiz

May 09, 2023 at 8:53 AM

Can you tell me what the nickname “Mo” is short for in the Inheart series by German author Cornelia Funke?  Perhaps you know why a poem about dishes from “A Light in the Attic” by American author Shel Silverstein was banned when it was released in the 1970s?  If you don’t, just ask the Kids’ Lit Quiz team!

The girls travelled to St. Cuthbert’s school hall on Wednesday morning to compete in answering children's literature trivia questions such as these against 60 other Auckland teams.  At the beginning of the year, our most passionate readers in Years 7-8 were invited to try out for a place on two teams of four girls each.  There was immense interest and many girls were turned away as competition was fierce, not only to get on a team, but also in the Lit Quiz competition itself.  There were 100 questions over 10 surprise categories, such as “Abbreviations” “Baldness” “Famous Animals” “Pies” and the most challenging: “Controversial Books.” Both Saint Kentigern teams started off strong but the Year 8s pulled ahead after choosing “Abbreviations” for their Joker round (double points) and scoring very highly.  

A midway Intermission revealed that the Year 8 team comprised of Bella Chen, Harriet Ludbrook, Phoebe Wakelin and Sophia Pike were in the lead!  Excitement grew as the girls scored highly in the remaining 5 rounds, standing up for recognition of top scores in the category 4 times through the competition! After three hours of quizzing and ten challenging rounds, the girls held hands as the winners were announced and they hadn’t yet been called for fourth, third, or second place…. “and the winner is, Saint Kentigern Girls Team 1!” Their jaws dropped to the floor as they came up to the front of the stage where Quizmaster Wayne Mills started filling their hands with $100 bills for a total of $1000 to put towards their travel to Wellington on June 17th where the National round of the competition will take place. 

This was a well-earned win based on not only a lifetime love of reading for these girls, but also on the last six months where reading efforts were doubled, bags of library books were taken home for school holidays, lunchbreaks were filled with team practices, and strategic reading across a variety of literary genres and categories was planned.  This collective enthusiasm for reading and fantastic teamwork will serve them well as they face New Zealand’s top teams at Nationals for a chance to go on to compete in this years’ Kids’ Lit Quiz World Final in Havelock North.

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