Battle of the Books
St. John Bosco librarian Theresa Harvey, Teagan Scott, Stephanie Burckhard and Claire Rafford stand with their first place trophy after winning the regional competition of Battle of the Books. Submitted photo

Three girls from St. John Bosco Catholic School in Ahwatukee Foothills certainly know their books. The team won first place in the regional competition of the Battle of the Books.

For the competition, they were required to read 12 books and were quizzed on specific details of each one by a panel of judges. Teagan Scott, 11, Stephanie Burckhard, 12, and Claire Rafford, 11, made up the winning team from St. John Bosco.

Eleven teams from Chandler, Queen Creek, Higley, Mesa and Gilbert competed in the regional competition, which took place on May 10 at the Queen Creek Center of the Arts.

Teams were comprised of fifth- and sixth-graders in sets of two or three. Each team was asked a question about one of the books they read and received a point if they got it right.

"They were very hard and detailed questions," Rafford said.

To prepare for the competition, each of the three girls read all of the books multiple times. Scott said she read one particular book 11 times.

"The books were mostly pretty good," she said. "We all had one we really liked so it made it easier."

To make it to the regional competition, the team from St. John Bosco had to place in the top three in the two previous rounds. In the final round, they answered every question right.

"The regional round was the most intense and we had a little bit of luck, too," Burckhard said. "I think we just really worked well together as a team and that's why we won."

The books ranged in subject matter from science fiction to historical fiction. Their parents helped them with practice questions leading up to the competition.

"We practically memorized every book and going over the practice questions definitely helped," Scott said. "We didn't expect to win. We just knew a lot of details for every book."

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