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Five from WDMCS to Compete in State Geographic Bee


Crestview fourth grader Finn Nadel and Jordan Creek sixth grader Jay Chevuru finished fifth in the state in their grade level  and Stilwell eighth grader JJ Kapur placed 12th at the 2014 Iowa State Geographic Bee April 4. Westridge sixth grader Eric Schwartzbauer and Indian Hills seventh grader Andrew Behrens each finished in top half of their grade level, with each level hosting a field of 100 students.

This is the second level of the National Geographic Bee competition, which is now in its 26th year. Bees were held at WDMCS elementary and junior high schools in November and January to determine each school’s Bee winner. School-level winners from across the state then took a qualifying test, which they submitted to the National Geographic Society. The National Geographic Society invited the students with the top 100 scores in each of the 50 states, District of Columbia, Department of Defense Dependents Schools and U.S. territories to compete at the state level.

The state winner will receive $100, the Complete National Geographic on DVD and a trip to Washington, D.C., to represent Iowa in the National Geographic Bee finals to be held at National Geographic Society headquarters, May 19-21. National Geographic Channel and Nat Geo WILD will air the final round of the 2014 National Geographic Bee, moderated by new host Soledad O’Brien, on Thursday, May 22 at 7 p.m. ET (to be followed on public television stations). Visit www.nationalgeographic.com/geobee for more information on the National Geographic Bee.

The West Des Moines Community Schools social studies curriculum offers students the opportunity to study a different geographic region and culture in depth each year in the lower elementary grades. In fourth grade students do a geography unit concentrated on geography concepts, then focus on U.S. history in fifth grade and civics in sixth grade. Ancient civilizations are explored in seventh grade, focusing on geography and culture.

To learn more about the West Des Moines Community Schools social studies curriculum, call 515-633-5055.

How would you fare as a Bee contestant? At the school-level Bee this year, students had to answer such questions as:

  • From its source in Minnesota, the Mississippi River flows south about 2,300 miles before emptying into what large gulf? Gulf of Mexico
  • A subspecies of brown bear known as the Kodiak bear takes its common name from an island that lies off the southern coast of what state? Alaska
  • The Danakil Depression, located in part of the Great Rift Valley, is one of the lowest points on which continent? Africa
  • What is the term for the triangular deposit of sediment sometimes found at the mouth of a river – moraine or delta? Delta