Franklin Teams Advance to State Reading Tournament

Elementary and middle school teams from Franklin School have earned a spot to compete at the Oregon Battle of the Books state championship to be held Saturday, April 8. The Oregon Battle of the Books (OBOB) is sponsored by the Oregon Association of School Libraries and welcomes participation of students in grades 3-12. All Corvallis School District elementary and middle schools participated in this year’s OBOB events and sent teams to the regional tournament in March. While all district teams had a strong showing, only Franklin elementary and middle school teams made it to the top at the regional battle.

OBOB is a state-wide voluntary reading motivation and comprehension program. Books chosen for the reading list include a wide range of titles, subject areas, cultural perspective and genres including realistic fiction, nonfiction, fantasy, science fiction, historical fiction, mystery. Many of the titles are already in the school library collections and the district’s school libraries are provided with five additional copies of each of the 16 required titles. Students read the books and hold practice battles with their teammates.  Battles are somewhat like Jeopardy, in which student teams earn points by answering questions about the books on the book list.

School teams are registered in the fall, but students may start reading the books as the titles are announced for the next year.  Teams of four compete at the school level in February, then one school team earns a spot to participate in the regional competition. The top two regional winners then advance to the state tournament.  According to Franklin School Media Assistant, Andrea Midrexler, the school started with 8 elementary and 5 middle school teams last fall and are coordinated by parent volunteer Wendy Woothtakewahbitty.

OBOB motivates students to read a variety of book genres. It gets them excited about reading and collaborating with their peers. The battle questions help young readers comprehend and retain the text. Ms. Midrexler shared that enthusiasm is high at Franklin, “There is so much excitement in our school, some students have already started reading for next year’s battle. It is so much fun to watch the students read and work together; I’m really proud of these kids.”