The Quizzards of Oz

Well, our author team managed (barely!) to hold our own against some brilliant middle-grade readers at Vancouver’s inaugural Kids Lit Quiz on Friday. The only category in which they trumped us: Harry Potter trivia.

(Do you know the librarian’s name at Hogwarts? Because we didn’t, but they all did!)

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Posing with my teammates, Lee Edward Fodi, Kallie George, and Stacey Matson, in Little Flower Academy’s gorgeous library.

While we were there, we had a fascinating chat with Quizmaster and Kids Lit Quiz founder Wayne Mills. Wayne is a professor in New Zealand and by the sounds of it, he spends half his year travelling around the world organizing and hosting quiz events.

The sign at the front of the room proclaimed: “Welcome to the sport of reading.” Wayne pointed out that we spend all of our time in school helping those who are struggling with reading, and very little time celebrating those who are great. Meanwhile, there are fairs for the science kids and tournaments for the sports kids and nothing at all — especially no team events — for the literary kids.

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Quizmaster Wayne Mills with Stacey.

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Me trying to butter up judge Rob Bittner. (And to continue that trend, you should read his blog if you don’t already.)

This is a team event to trump all others. The winners in Vancouver (congratulations, Southridge!) will travel to Toronto for the nationals, and the winners at the nationals will travel to New England somewhere. I didn’t catch all the details, but I did hear “try their hand at throwing harpoons, to see how they would have faired in the days of Herman Melville.” How cool is that?

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I am officially a Kids Lit Quiz fan. But I wish I were 11, so I could try for the trophy.

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