SARATOGA SPRINGS — A love of reading and books will be on full display on March 13 when over 475 students on 65 teams from 18 local school districts compete in the 2023 “Battle of the Books.”
This event, which is coordinated by the WSWHE BOCES School Library System, begins with the first rounds at 8:45 a.m. at SUNY Adirondack in Queensbury. The snow date is March 14. Finals for each grade will be in the Scoville Learning Center starting at 11:00 a.m.
Students in grades 3-6 prepared for the Battle of the Books for many months by reading a total of 10 fiction and non-fiction books. The teams, which consist of 15 or fewer students each on the day of the competitions, have tested themselves on every kind of detail imaginable, from the plot to the dedication. During the competition, five students on the team will have 20 seconds to answer a recall question, responding with the title and author of the book. Teams may switch players mid-way through the battle if they so choose. There are 31 questions per round for each battle.
“After two years of virtual events, we are happy to be back in-person. The competition engages students, encourages them to choose books they might not read on their own, and opens up a whole new side of reading for them,” says WSWHE BOCES School Library System Coordinator, Kerrie Burch. “Students who participate love it. They make new friends and connections with their peers.”
For all competitions, there are volunteer “readers” who ask the students’ questions and make the decisions on accepting challenges. Each grade level competition is set up in a bracket system where a first, second, and third place team is determined in the end. Each of the winning teams is awarded a banner to bring back to their schools that can be displayed.