From left are Creswell OBOBbers Brielle Brick, Raina Davis, Julianne Kersgaard, Emma Kersgaard and Coach Pam Kersgaard. Photo provided
Brielle Brick, Raina Davis, Emma Kersgaard and Julianne Kersgaard have worked together for three years as a team and earned their first trip to the Oregon Battle of the Books (OBOB) state competition – and won the title.
”OBOB is a fun quiz-type competition for kids who love to read. Students read books from a chosen list, 16 books in elementary and middle school and 12 books at the high-school level,” Coach Pam Kersgaard said. ”They form a team of four or five students who compete against other teams to determine who remembers the most details from each book.”
Last year, they nearly made it to the state event, and came in third in Regionals. That experience, Kersgaard said, made them more motivated than ever to reach the state event at Chemeketa Community College. Kersgaard said she was impressed at how diligently the students studied for the competition.
There were 15 OBOB teams from all over Oregon from as far as La Grande. The final battle was between Creswell and Ashland. It was held in a large auditorium where the students sat up on stage and the spokesperson, Emma Kersgaard, used the microphone to state their answer.
Their team was down 20 points in the beginning, but they came back at the end to win by 20 points.
This year’s books dealt with topics such as race relations, poverty, schizophrenia and the maritime disaster of World War II refugees.
The OBOB team studied Spanish phrases, German phrases, history, art history and medical terminology as well as medications. They are now planning to apply these study skills to their AP geography class.
The OBOB program was dropped at the Creswell Middle School this year. Last year, the program was run by Tracey Armitage and Kersgaard; six middle school teams participated. The Creswell Elementary School OBOB program is run by Creswell Library Youth Librarian Nick Caum.
”Creswell schools do not have enough funding or staffing for this program, which could hopefully change next year,” Kersgaard said. ”Kids learn a whole new appreciation of reading from this program and kids that did not love reading before, acquire a whole new found passion for reading.”
Any interested volunteers for this program could contact Creswell Middle School Principal Shirley Burrus at [email protected] or Caum at [email protected].