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April 4, 2013
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Grace Christian geography bee growing

To see the Altai Mountains and to climb peaks around Ulaanbaatar, you would travel to what country?

Which country is not crossed by the tropic of Capricorn: Botswana, Australia, or the Democratic Republic of the Congo?

Nullarbor National Park, known for its caves, coastal cliffs and wombats, is located on which continent?

These were only three of the questions asked of Grace Christian Academy’s geography bee contestants.

According to requirements and rules established by the National Geographic Society, students in grades four through eight could participate. In addition, a school must have a minimum of six students participating in order to compete.

In the 2011-12 school year, GCA had eight students participate. Fifth-grade student Matthew Schick won the school level competition and then qualified for the state competition in Las Vegas.

This year, 17 GCA students participated in the competition, cheered on by enthusiastic classmates, parents and teachers. Eight of the 17 were fourth-grade students, which bodes well for the future of the competition.

After nearly three hours of competition, four finalists remained. Sixth-grade students were Quinn Cummings, Matthew Schick and Daniel Taylor. A seventh-grade student, Zoe Tkaczyk, rallied to be the one junior high student and the only female finalist.

By the end of the day, Daniel was runner-up, and Matthew once again won the school level competition. Passing the subsequent qualifying test, Matthew again qualified for the state level competition, and will be heading to Las Vegas.

“We look forward to our third annual bee next year, and we hope to have even more participants,” said Principal Debbie Conner. “We were proud of all the participants and congratulate Matthew Schick for winning the school level competition for two consecutive years. And perhaps next year we’ll know the answer to the question about Ulaanbaatar.”

For more information about Grace Christian Academy, visit

For more information about the bee, visit

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The Record Courier Updated Apr 4, 2013 04:56PM Published Apr 5, 2013 09:42AM Copyright 2013 The Record Courier. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.