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Battle of the Books - from The Messenger

February 5, 2019

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3 boys work as team answering questions about booksBefore fourth-graders at Duncombe Elementary School put their knowledge of books to the test Monday afternoon, they needed to have some team names picked out.

Those team names included the Bookworms, Legendary Kitties, and the Unicorn Squad.

Madden Bailey, 9, was proud to say he drew all of the kitties on his team's poster.

The teams were made up of students in Kristin Hatton's fourth-grade class. The students were put in groups of four to compete in a game called Battle of the Books.

"We have never done anything like this before," Hatton said.

Leading up to the battle, students were tasked with reading 10 books. The books were handed out in November.

They included titles such as "Fantastic Mr. Fox" by Roald Dahl, "Paul Bunyan" by Steven Kellogg, and "Honus and Me: A Baseball Card Adventure" by Dan Gutman.

"You have had about 10 weeks to do all of the reading," Hatton said.

"I missed two books," Greyson Chance said.

Chance, a member of the Legendary Kitties, played a little catch up before the game started. He flipped through the pages of one of the books.

"Yay," Chance said. "I just finished Paul Bunyan."

During the game, Hatton asked students what book a particular saying was featured in.

Teams had 45 seconds to answer. Two points were awarded for naming the correct title. Three points were awarded for naming the correct author.

When a team answered incorrectly, the next team got the chance to steal.

There were 10 rounds in the game with six questions in each round.

In the first round the students appeared to be on top of their game.

Every team answered correctly.

But in the rounds that followed, some of the questions left students perplexed.

One student had an idea.

"If we don't know the answer can I call on my mom?" Madden Bailey said.

Amelia Stephan, 10, a member of the Bookworms, started to notice a trend.

"We always get the title right and they always get the author," she said.

"They get all the easy ones," Erik Larson, 10, a member of the Legendary Kitties, said.

In the end, the Bookworms lived up to their name.

They won the Battle of the Books by scoring 122 points.

"Nice job, you guys," Hatton said. "Everyone did a lot of great reading."

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