It’s no secret that DAIS students LOVE to read! So, it’s also not surprising that the Kids Read ASA has become super popular for middle school students. Kids Read is a reading competition between several international schools in Northern China. Participants read books and then participate in a trivia competition in the spring. Last September, more than twenty students signed up for the Kids Read ASA, including several fifth graders who were eager to read great books and get familiar with the Kids Read program so they can compete as sixth graders next year.
Ultimately, two teams of four students and an alternate were chosen from grades 6 and 7 to compete against teams from schools in Beijing, Qingdao, and Tianjin. Collectively, each team was responsible for reading SIXTY books (!) chosen by teachers and librarians at participating schools. This year’s books included a great variety of short stories, traditional books, graphic novels, horror, romance, non-fiction, and more.
When asked which books were their favorites, students had a variety of responses. Veteran Kids Read member Reann Lim (7) said she liked, “The Surprising Power of A Good Dumpling because it mentions a lot of topics I know about and it was really interesting.” Kenneth Zhang (7) enjoyed reading All He Knew, while first-time Kids Reader Samantha Villanueva (6) said Harrow Lake was her favorite because “…it is the perfect mix of a thriller and a mystery (including some romance).”
For the third year in a row, the competition was held online, this time hosted by the Western Academy of Beijing. For the first time, teams competed over Kahoot with a variety of question types. It was a challenge, but most students reported that they liked the new format. Sixth grade competitors said they felt prepared, but still reported feeling anxious before the competition. Once the competition got underway, they settled in and had fun!
Ben Le explained, “The competition was very intense.” Sam Villanueva said it was “…less scary than I thought.” Grady Armstrong said he enjoyed the competition because, “…we got to work together and problem solve.” Returning 7th grade students reported feeling pretty calm since they had competed last year.
Overall, Kids Read 2022 was a great success. Even with a new format and so many disruptions with online learning throughout the school year, our two teams did DAIS proud! Second place went to Team Sea Dragons: Liana Gifford (7), Lilian Bian (7), Miranda Jin (7), and Grady Armstrong (6) with Kenneth Zhang (7) as an alternate. Close behind in third place was Team Duct Tape: Reann Lim (7), Ellen Chiew (7), Ben Le (6), Sam Villanueva (6) with Mihir Anil (6) as an alternate.
Mrs. Perez and Ms. Stark have loved coaching Kids Read for the last two years and are very proud of our students. Well done, DAIS readers!