BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — It’s not very often that you see middle schoolers up early on a weekend. So when you do, you know it must be for good reason.
Twenty three teams. One hundred and fifty nine competitors.14 libraries and five books. That’s what makes up Buffalo’s Battle of the Books.
Mary Jean Jakubowski, Director of Erie County’s Public Library System, told News 4, “It is an exciting jeopardy round program, that will go through a series of eliminations answering unbelievably specific questions about 5 books that these children have been reading.”
The competition combines students between 6th and 9th grade and allows them to use their memory, along with time management skills to answer questions about the books at random. Jakubowski said, “These questions are not easy. It will be like for example on page 102 in the Apothecary, what color hat is so and so wearing? And you won’t believe how quickly these students can answer questions like that.”
Each round has a total of 15 questions with 20 seconds allotted to answer each. If the teams don’t answer in time, they are not awarded any points. If they do answer correctly their points are tallied together. At the end, whoever got the most questions right in a round advances to the finale. Jakubowski explained what that entails. She said, “It’s a 3 minute round where questions are asked very quickly. And they go through and it’s just like jeopardy they have to answer the questions very very quickly and the winner comes away with medals and just the honor of being battle of the books champions.”
It’s a great event that allows students the opportunity to make friends, while doing one of their favorite hobbies. And working out their brains in the process.
The winner of the 2017 Buffalo & Erie County Public Library’s Battle of the Books competition was a team from Amherst Public Library. The runner-up team was from Grand Island Memorial Library.