LITTLETON, NH -- Joe DePalma, a sixth-grade student at Lakeway Elementary School, won the school-level competition of the National Geographic Bee on Dec. 13 and is one step closer to winning a $25,000 college scholarship. This is the 25th annual National Geographic Bee and the school-level bee was open to all Littleton students in sixth, seventh and eighth grade. The top three finalists were DePalma, seventh-grader Emily Daine, and returning finalist eighth-grader Abhinay Burra. These top finalists answered oral questions on geography. This year's Bee is sponsored by Google (visit www.google.com/educators/geo).
The kickoff for this year's Bee was the week of Nov. 12 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 5.
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 20-22. The first-place national winner will receive a $25,000 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).
"Jeopardy!" host Alex Trebek will moderate the national finals on May 22. The program will air on television. Check local listings for dates and times.
Everyone can test their geography knowledge with the exciting 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. Founded in 1888 to "increase and diffuse geographic knowledge," the Society's mission is to inspire people to care about the planet. It reaches more than 400 million people worldwide each month through its official journal, 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.