Members of one of the advancing Knowledge Bowl teams from the Chatfield junior high are, from left, Nick Maki, Dillion Bance, Kevin Bradt, Nathan Clarke and Luke Dietz.
Members of one of the advancing Knowledge Bowl teams from the Chatfield junior high are, from left, Nick Maki, Dillion Bance, Kevin Bradt, Nathan Clarke and Luke Dietz.
Several junior high Chatfield students recently went bowling without pins.

"We had four teams, and two went on," said Chatfield Knowledge Bowl advisor Patricia Doyle, sharing just how proud she is of the junior high students.

The first team to advance includes students Nick Maki, Dillion Bance, Kevin Bradt, Nathan Clarke and Luke Dietz. The second is made up of Jack Tuohy, Josh Walsh, Andy Arellano, Mikaela Kohlmeyer, Jeana Chapman and Larissa Martin.

They, and the other two teams competed at the 2013-2014 Junior High Knowledge Bowl Sub-Regional Competition, held Jan. 8 and 9, at Rochester Community and Technical College, where the students earned fifth and sixth place, respectively, in the AA division.

The Southeast Service Cooperative organizes the local Knowledge Bowl competitions.

The Knowledge Bowl competitions are interdisciplinary academic contests for students. Junior high Knowledge Bowl is for students in sixth through ninth grade. During the contest, teams of students compete in written and oral rounds by answering questions related to all areas of learning, typical of secondary educational programs. Questions test students' recall, problem solving and critical thinking skills.

According to the Cooperative's website, this competition provides a format for student growth centered around academics. Teams consist of six students, with six competing in the written round and five competing in each oral round.

Doyle's students spent hours preparing for the competition, as they knew they would be up against students from other districts who had invested the same in order to be ready.

During the January contest, a total of 49 teams from 18 area districts participated

Teams competed in round robin competitions in October, November and December. Each team then competed in the sub-regional competitions in January, and the top 12 teams from each tier advanced to the regional contest.

The competitions consist of one written round with 60 questions and four oral rounds with 45 questions per round.

Chatfield's students put their gray matter to work against that belonging to students in Dover-Eyota, Kasson-Mantorville, Kenyon-Wanamingo, Pine Island, Plainview-Elgin-Millville and Red Wing and advanced to the regional competition at the Clarion Inn in Rochester on Jan. 13 and 14.

Doyle enjoys coaching the students because she sees their enthusiasm as they test their knowledge and get ready to go bowling without pins, all the while building relationships with one another as a team.

"My hope is that through this activity, students have fun learning - it is a great way to challenge oneself in academic knowledge," she said. "Reading is key to winning, so those who are well-read always come out on top in Knowledge Bowl. Also, students are able to work as a team and come up with a correct answer."

Doyle also added, "One highlight for me is when a student will share they had a math question in a round in which they learned how to figure out the answer to in Mr. Bartels's class. Another student will excitedly approach me and say, 'Ms. Doyle, we just studied that in Mr. Becker's class.' They have huge grins on their faces and have a reason to be proud."