Eureka Union
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Cavitt Jr. High Student Poised to Win State National Geographic BeeeTop of Page

Students in the classroomGranite Bay, Ca – February 15, 2011 – Cavitt Jr. High student is poised to lead the state in April at the National Geographic Bee competition, in part because of the Eureka Union School District’s (EUSD) vision for education and its Challenge 21 program.

Cavitt Jr. High used the Bee as an opportunity to teach students Geography in a different way, and combined the skills of the district’s Challenge 21 curriculum by collaborating with the media department in order to broadcast the competition to all classrooms.  School Principal Jennifer Platt stated, “…by having it (the Bee) televised, we wove in several Challenge 21 skills.  For the competitors, many of them used multiple sources to increase their knowledge...they needed to demonstrate communication skills during the competition and competing was the culmination of a goal they set for themselves.  For the production team, they demonstrated flexibility, leadership, teamwork and responsibility as the production was shown live to the entire school”.

EUSD’s Challenge 21 program and Cavitt’s curriculum, weaves communication, critical thinking, collaboration, technology, innovation, life, and character skills throughout the core fundamentals.  The students practice the application of these skills regularly in the classroom so that they are prepared to use them in their college, career, world, and community life.

Ed Seaman, history teacher at Cavitt for the past 35 years, got the school involved in the Bee five years ago.  The entire school is engaged in the competition and he believes the Bee is a great way for other students to collaborate and learn from their peers that Geography is “a much wider range of topics and more than just a place on a map”.

Although a Cavitt student has yet to make it to nationals, Mr. Seaman has this to say about this year’s opportunity, “It is very difficult to qualify to be one of the top 100 students to participate in the state championships in California, as our state has so many entrants.  I think last year’s winner, Walker Knauss, and this year’s winner Karl Redmon, would have a very good chance of winning in many other states.  Yet, Karl has a chance to win in California, his breadth of knowledge is that good”.

Winning the state competition is step 2 in the National Bee.  Last year Cavitt student, Walker Knass, took 40th among 100 students competing at state level even though he was a 7th grade student competing against mostly 8th grade students.  This year, in a challenging local competition, Walker Knauss took second place to his good friend Karl Redmon.  You can view the Geography Bee competition on the Cavitt Jr. High website at

The State Bee will be held on April 1, 2011, at a location yet to be determined and Nationals will be May 24 and 25, 2011, in Washington D.C.  State champions and teacher-escorts will be provided with an all-expense paid trip to the National Bee by The National Geographic Society. 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.

EUSD is comprised of 7 schools, K–8 all located in East Roseville and Granite Bay, Ca.  Registration packets are now being accepted for inter-district transfers.

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