LITTLETON, NH -- Joe DePalma, a seventh-grade student at Daisy Bronson Middle School, won the school-level competition of the National Geographic Bee on Dec. 13 and is one step closer to winning a $50,000 college scholarship. This is the 26th annual National Geographic Bee and the school-level bee was open to all Littleton students in seventh and eighth grade. The top three finalists were returning finalist eighth-grader Emily Daine, returning finalist seventh-grader Joe DePalma, and seventh-grader Elizabeth Fortner. These top finalists answered oral questions on geography. This year's Bee is sponsored by Google (visit http://maps.google.com/help/maps/education/).
The kickoff for this year's Bee was the week of Nov. 11, with thousands of schools around the United States and in the five U.S. territories participating. The school winners, including DePalma, will now take a written test; up to 100 of the top scorers on that test in each state will then be eligible to compete in their state Bee April 4, 2014.
The National Geographic Society will provide an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C., for state champions and teacher-escorts to participate in the Bee national championship rounds on May 19-21. The first-place national winner will receive a $50,000 college scholarship, a lifetime membership in the Society, and a trip to the Galapagos Islands, courtesy of Lindblad Expeditions and National Geographic (visit www.expeditions.com).
Award-winning journalist Soledad O' Brien will moderate the national finals on May 21. The program will air on television.
Everyone can test their geography knowledge with the GeoBee Challenge, an online geography quiz at www.nationalgeographic.com/geobee, which poses 10 new questions a day, or by downloading the "National Geographic GeoBee Challenge" app, with more than 1,000 questions culled from past Bees, from the App Store on iPhone, iPod touch and iPad; from the Android Market; or for Nook Color.
The National Geographic Society is one of the world's largest nonprofit scientific and educational organizations. Its mission is to inspire people to care about the planet. Founded in 1888, the Society is member supported and offers a community for members to get closer to explorers, connect with other members and help make a difference. The Society reaches more than 450 million people worldwide each month through National Geographic and other magazines; National Geographic Channel; television documentaries; music; radio; films; books; DVDs; maps; exhibitions; live events; school publishing programs; interactive media; and merchandise. National Geographic has funded more than 10,000 scientific research, conservation and exploration projects and supports an education program promoting geographic literacy. For more information, visit www.natonalgeographic.com.