Foothills bookworms among country’s best

Photo: Avid readers Will Murphy,12, Bronte Brown, Jess Heaven and Arlo Bruce, all 11, have done the district proud at the national Kids' Lit Quiz final.

By Mick Jensen

A quartet of bookworms from the 90-pupil Mt Somers Springburn School are among the country’s best at “the sport of reading”.

Year 7 pupils Arlo Bruce, Will Murphy, Bronte Brown and Jess Heaven claimed seventh spot at the national Kids’ Lit Quiz in Wellington at the weekend.

The students beat 34 other school teams at the Mid and South Canterbury heats held at Waihi School last term and swotted hard for the grand final, held at the National Library.

Ten weeks prior to the final, the quartet collectively worked their way through an impressive 200 books.

Bronte Brown said all team members were avid readers, good friends and all had different strengths and book interests.

“In the regional event we had 10 rounds of questions covering everything from superheroes and watches, through to wolves and transport.

“All of the questions related back to character books, picture books and general literature up to young adult level.”

She said in the regional heat teams were able to write down their answers, but in the national final a buzzer system was used.

The gruelling final involving 15 other teams and five rounds of 15 questions. Teams started with 10 points and lost and won points depending on their answers.

The trip to Wellington was also an adventure for the Mt Somers quartet, who were accompanied by two teachers and some parents.

Arlo Bruce said the trip had included a visit to Te Papa, where they checked out the Gallipoli exhibition, saw a copy of the Treaty of Waitangi and also got up close to a whale heart display.

Other highlights had included a trip to Starbucks, the ordering of pizza and a trip to a big cinema, he said.

Mt Somers Springburn School intends sending a team to next year’s literacy quiz and the current team is keen to return.

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