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January 15, 2014

Middle schools crown Geography Bee winners

Competition tests geographic knowledge, map skills

Earlier this month, the district's middle schools each hosted their annual National Geographic School Bees. At both schools, competition began in the classroom and moved to schoolwide challenges where students who reached the finals were tested in a series of challenging geography questions prepared by the National Geographic Society. Students in grades 6-8 participated.

According to Luke Rakoczy, Van Antwerp principal and 6-8 social studies coordinator, the competition requires significant geographic knowledge and map analysis. Answers are presented orally and/or in writing. Students were eliminated from the competition if they answered two questions incorrectly in a format similar to a spelling bee.

Van Antwerp MS finalists were Brennan Piper, Andrew Gonzalez, Nick Tellone, Suchi Mehta, Andres Rojo, Luke Sheeran, James Kemp, Tess McGrinder, Evan Griffin and Natalie Oliver.

Andres Rojo edged James Kemp in the finals to emerge as the Van Antwerp MS Geography Bee Champion. Andrew Gonzalez finished third. Andres will now take an exam in an attempt to qualify for the state competition in March.

At Iroquois, finalists included Ariana Rogowski, Corrina Blood, Lucas Kammer, Peter Romano, Joy Lim, Jaden Giammattei, Patrick Frank, Avanti Khare and Cole Hedden.

Peter Romano edged Ariana Rogowski in the finals to be named Iroquois MS Geography Bee Champion. Corrina Blood finished third. Peter will also look to qualify for the state competition in March.

Congratulations to Andres and Peter and to all of Niskayuna's Geography Bee participants. Great Job!