Thursday, January 28, 2010

Geography Bee

Submitted by Kathy Bryce

The Puget Sound Lowlands are a densely populated region in which U.S. state?

Devin Plourde’s knowledge of the Pacific Northwest helped him clinch the 2010 Geographic Bee championship at Ashford School when he responded, “Washington.” Devin faced tough competition from runner-up Brian Balkus, a fifth grader. Eighth grader Josie Borysevicz placed third.

Both veterans of previous Bees, Devin and Brian knew that Nepal is home to eight of the ten highest mountain peaks in the world, resulting in a tie at the end of the championship round. In an exciting contest, it took seven tiebreaker questions for Devin to be declared the winner.

Other young geographers participating in the Bee included fourth grader Lynn Robinshaw, sixth graders Kolby Courtois and Emma Powers, seventh graders Austin Graveline, Ron LaMonica and Kyle Strogoff, and eighth grader Kelly Phillips.

The Bee is a program of the National Geographic Society for students in grades four through eight. Google is the sponsor of this year’s events. Bee questions address the physical and cultural aspects of both United States and world geography. Eighth grader Devin Plourde has completed a challenging written exam, aiming to qualify for the state Bee in April. Good luck, Devin!

All state winners are eligible to compete for the national championship in Washington, D.C., where the first-place prize is a $25,000 college scholarship and a trip to the Galápagos Islands. “Jeopardy!” host Alex Trebek will moderate the finals in May. Check local listings for televised dates. You can also test your geography knowledge with the GeoBee Challenge, an online geography quiz at The game poses ten new questions a day.