Need new buzzers?
The annual Matt's Buzzers drawing is Saturday, December 5! Ten applicants will be randomly selected to receive $250 grants toward the purchase of new buzzers.
If you are interested in competing, contact me, Bob Brown.
My home address is: Bob Brown, P.O. Box 801, Richland, Mo. 65556
My email address is: firstname.lastname@example.org
My home phone number is: 573-765-9971
My cell phone number is: 573-855-7002
The cost is 50 dollars per team. All teams are guaranteed 3 games, with 12 teams advancing to the finals. Games will begin at 9:00 and will be standard Missouri format games.
I am opening this tournament up to question providers across the state. This includes all of you guys who complain about question providers. We are limiting questions to four sentence maximums, but would prefer pyramidal questions of three sentences (due to time constraints). We want the distribution of questions to parallel MSHSAA standards (including mathematics). Games must include 10 extra questions in case of ties.
We will pay you the same rate that I get paid per game, that is 25 dollars per game. Once the questions are used, you can use them at other tournaments if you wish. All teams will receive copies of your games. We will want the games emailed to us, no later than Sept. 20.
I would hope that we would get a great set of questions that we can show to MSHSAA and members of MOACA. Please remember the time constraints (15 seconds) on math questions. This is one rule that I would like to see our board change to 30 seconds on calculations.
Any questions, just give me a call.
Have a great summer,
Richland High School
The Question Bank
When you say "four sentences," do you mean "4 lines Times New Roman, 12 font?"richbob wrote:We are limiting questions to four sentence maximums, but would prefer pyramidal questions of three sentences (due to time constraints).
When I say four sentences, I do mean in "Arial 12." Math computation questions don't lend themselves to being pyramidal, so they can be shorter. We just have to complete games within one hour. So, I don't want eight line sentences. Some of the revisions that I saw by Mike Wehmer were perfect.
My hope is to get Mike, Charlie Dees, Spencer, Jeffrey Hill, Matt (Radical 20) Chadbourne, or you to produce a great set that will "set a standard" for quality, practicality, and efficiency (in less than one hour). Again, we want the "standard MSHSAA mix of questions" in terms of subject area. Perhaps, each of you guys could produce one game that would allow many coaches to see each of your products. Shoot fire, we might pass out an evaluation sheet on whose sets were the best. We could let the players and the coaches rate them by writer. Now, I know that Mr. Gibbs would love to "grade" your questions for a change.
Jeremy Gibbs - we would love to see you guys come here. See the big town of Richland - you will walk away so impressed.
Thank you for putting me on the same tier as Matt, Charlie, and Jeffrey--the compliment is undeserved, but appreciated.
However, I have to admit that I'm still not entirely clear as to what you mean by "four sentences." As you no doubt already know, it's possible to write a four sentence question with 1 clue per sentence which goes for about 2 lines in 12 point font. It's also possible to write a four sentence question with 4 clues per sentence which goes for about 8 lines in 12 point font. Those are extremes, but I do want to make sure that when you say "four sentences," you mean four lines of printed font rather than anything that runs for four sentences.
I apologize for requesting so much clarification on this point, but I wanted to be absolutely sure about the requirements to avoid confusion.
<div class="editby">Edited by <a href='http://s4.zetaboards.com/Academic_Compe ... arbroil</a>, Jun 9 2009, 10:07:17 PM.</div>
Four lines across a sheet of paper is about the limit.
By the way, did you happen to see the scores of Sherwood High School at state? Not quite what they scored in districts or sectionals. Hmmmmm.
What do you think about the idea of each one of you guys writing one game each?
I am writing more pyramidal questions this year and they take much, much longer to write. For grammar, spelling, and mathematic computation, it is really difficult. For literature and geography, much, much easier. Time seems to be the main problem with writing this type of question. And time, of course, is MONEY, in this business.
Thank you for your valuable input. You have always acted very professionally on this board.
I am not interested in working on this project. If you want to mirror a high quality JV tournament, I fully recommend getting in contact with Chris Carter to bid on the Fall Novice tournament that is being written right now by a team of motivated high schoolers and being overseen by college players like me and Gautam Kandlikar. The information on that set can be found at http://www.hsquizbowl.org/forums/viewto ... f=1&t=7928What do you think about the idea of each one of you guys writing one game each?
I am a bit disappointed that you won't write one game that can be used to show MSHSAA and other coaches the beauty of pyramidal questions. This could be an awesome tournament, with teams playing on six or seven different games, provided by different people. A very unique idea, I think. It's one way to find out who is the best team on different sets of questions.
Come on, reconsider your decision. It doesn't take that long to write one game.
We already have one person from the board who will write some games.
If you didn't get one, contact me at this website.
Fort Zumwalt West is the only team entered.
573-765-3711 ext 113 (school)
1. Ft. Zumwalt West Varsity (maybe JV also)
2. Kickapoo (Varsity and JV)
3. Hallsville (Varsity and JV)
4. Salem (Varsity and JV)
5. Strafford (Varsity)
6. Clever (Varsity)
7. Richland (Varsity)
So far, we have ten confirmed entries. There is room for 14 more.
Here are the teams who are entered as of Tuesday, Sept. 15th:
Fort Zumwalt West (2 varsity teams)
Kickapoo (1 Var, 1 JV)
Hallsville (1 Var, 1 JV)
Salem (1 Var, 1 JV)
Strafford (1 Var)
Clever (1 Var)
Richland (1 Var)
There is still room for 13 more teams.
Any questions, feel free to call me at Richland High School (573-765-3711, ext. 113).
Umm...no, definitely not. Absolutely no spelling tossups and so far no spelling bonuses.FZW Coach wrote:Which means we get 3 Language Arts questions instead? Here comes spelling!!!
I'm sorry if that gives away a little bit of what the questions are like, but that should be a given. Coach Brown, please inform the attending teams that there will be no spelling tossups whatsoever.
Eh, I wouldn't agree with that--at a high school level, there are enough clues to write 4 lines of linguistically related clues about a language or country. I don't think it would be as feasible at a college level, but I think the ones we've written so far are decent.ashkenaziCD wrote:no such thingFZW Coach wrote:inteteresting foreign language questions.
I agree that it's an imperfect system, though.
Mr. Brown: I have a prior commitment, so I'm unfortunately not going to be able to come and moderate this time. Good luck with the tournament.
Is it just you and Julia writing? Or is John or other Washington U. players helping out?
By the way, I do not think it is a bad thing to reward students who have studied a foreign language to be rewarded for doing so. Education should always be rewarded in this game. Students seem to enjoy answering questions from information they have learned in class more so than from information they have learned outside of class (they see the connections better of what we are doing in the classroom to a real life situation).
How on earth is answering a (poorly written) quizbowl question analogous to seeing how learning in school is applicable to the real world? Last I checked the way to apply foreign language instruction to the real world was not to participate in a contrived academic game, but rather to go and talk to people who also know that language.FZW Coach wrote:By the way, I do not think it is a bad thing to reward students who have studied a foreign language to be rewarded for doing so. Education should always be rewarded in this game. Students seem to enjoy answering questions from information they have learned in class more so than from information they have learned outside of class (they see the connections better of what we are doing in the classroom to a real life situation).
Mines 6 days after Marshalls then. Close enough.socalcaptain wrote:Brian, are you aware of the meta-significance of your screen name in response to this post?
[Answer: October 17 is Eminem's birthday. And mine, actually...]
Are the questions already to go, Charles? Any help from Julia?
First of all, I'd like to thank everyone who helped me make this tournament possible. These include Dan Donohue (a senior at St. Viator High School in IL), who wrote an incredible number of questions in the past few weeks, my collaborator Julia Price, as well as Jason Loy, Zach Foster (of George Mason University), Isaac Hirsch (of Blake--and a variety of other pseudonymous--High School), and Douglas Graebner, who wrote questions at the last minute to fill this tournament's needs. This couldn't have happened without you.
That being said, I am aware that this set had a number of flaws (including half as many replacement questions as it should have), and that is entirely my own fault--I didn't budget time as well as I should have and I didn't ask for help as soon as I needed to; that's entirely my own responsibility and I apologize. In addition, I also apologize for the repeats, though I'd like to note that in many cases, while answers were repeated or mentioned several times (ex. a tossup asking for a work and later a bonus asking for that work's author), the clues used were generally unique, with some unfortunate exceptions.
Now, to the questions themselves.
Personally, I think these questions fulfilled their target difficulty--which was high JV/low Varsity, or roughly the difficulty of an NAQT A set. That being said, I did get a text from a participant at the tournament mentioning that some of the questions were "frustrating."
While I'll have to wait to ask her what exactly she meant by that, I imagine it has something to do with the answer selection. In writing these questions, I (as well as my cowriters) consciously worked to include topics in subjects that don't come up as often in Missouri but are both important in an objective sense and also come up frequently in national quality Quiz Bowl--such as NAQT, HSAPQ, and the many high quality housewritten tournaments out there. These topics included world (especially non European) literature, additional breadth in the fine arts, and most importantly, social sciences such as psychology, sociology, linguistics, and economics as well as world religions and philosophy. While some of these answers are probably new to most of the teams, I can assure everyone that they were all from the easiest possible choices available for the topics at hand.
Of course, it's quite possible that I'm reading too much into a 30 character text message and everyone loved my answer choices. That would be great.
Finally, while I should have mentioned this earlier, this was the distribution for the questions:
10/4 Social Studies*:
2/1 American History
3/1 European History
2/1 World History
3/0 Misc. Social Studies (Religion, Economics, Government, etc.)
3/1 American Literature
3/1 British Literature
4/1 World Literature
2/1 Misc. Science
7/3 Computational Math
3/1 Theoretical Math
3/1 Fine Arts:
The subdistribution was pretty random on this one, and was limited to making sure that there was at least one music or one visual art question--it could go from 2/1 VA and 1/0 Music to 2/1 Music and 1/0 VA.
3/1 Language Arts:
This included mostly languages, dialects, countries, grammar, and occasional questions on letters with two or three bonuses with one spelling part.
This included popular culture but also various academic topics and an occasional funny common link--ex., the questions that asked about people with a certain name.
All values are within +/- 1 of actual per packet values, since some topics (ex. geography) weren't explicitly mentioned but did come up. I'm fairly sure this is fairly accurate, though, unless I made a mistake (there maybe a few, but this should be accurate)
*The final bonus for SS could be in any of the existing topics or another topic, such as geography
**Mythology replaced a few of the bonuses and tossups, also, the the final bonus for literature could be in any of the existing topics or another topic
***All science was theoretical science, though there was some science biography and some of the computational math (1/0) was more computational science.
Addendum: Fort Zumwalt West won the JV bracket. My friend told me that there was "too much math," which I'm somewhat confused about. I'll have to ask about it later.
<div class="editby">Edited by <a href='http://s4.zetaboards.com/Academic_Compe ... arbroil</a>, Oct 17 2009, 03:18:18 PM.</div>
This brings up another point I forgot to mention. While we did our best to provide the highest quality questions possible for this tournament, I remain of the opinion that it would have been better to use a set by a provider such as NAQT or HSAPQ for this tournament.Jason Loy wrote:I hope that everyone involved enjoyed this tournament and encourage participants to use it as a springboard into competing on quality pyramidal questions.
There are too many inherent constraints within the MSHSAA distribution (including its length) for it to be an ideal distribution regardless of who writes the questions (because 3 line questions for varsity play are simply too short to provide a quality number of clues).
Thus, I do not intend on seeking to be the question provider for this tournament next year, and I hope that Coach Brown will move on to a provider such as NAQT or HSAPQ, having (hopefully) seen the positive nature of pyramidal questions and a greater emphasis on the use of theoretical math.
After all, while I understand the use of MSHSAA format in Conference play, given the smaller size of Conferences and the format's use in the State tournament, there seems to be little reason to adhere to it at an invitational event, especially given that high quality questions in another format would do just as well to prepare teams for a higher quality State tournament (or even the less optimal one we have at the moment) as high quality questions in the MSHSAA format--especially if invitational questions written in the MSHSAA format weren't as good because of the format's inherent weaknesses.
- Jeffrey Hill
- Posts: 6468
- Joined: Thu Apr 29, 2004 11:00 pm
- Location: In between the bright lights and the far unlit unknown (aka Johnson County, KS)
I don't remember seeing anything about this upthread, but is the set used at this tournament potentially open for use elsewhere in the state? In other words, is it cleared for public discussion yet?Charbroil wrote:Addendum: I would be willing to take on additional contracts of this sort in the future if the issue at hand was that the tournament director lacked the financial resources to contract with NAQT/HSAPQ for questions, since I am willing to do this kind of thing if the alternative is, say, Questions Galore.
Because I do plan on reusing the questions in additional tournaments, I'd greatly appreciate it if all discussion remained question non-specific. If anyone has anything they'd like to tell me about specific questions, please email me at charleshang228 [at] yahoo.com
Clever 100, FZW 510
Hallsville 330, Norwood 280
Kickapoo 280, Salem 270
Richland 380, Strafford 130
Clever 200, Salem 320
FZW 450, Richland 260
Hallsville 350, Kickapoo 150
Norwood 230, Strafford 130
Clever 180, Richland 360
FZW 510, Salem 170
Hallsville 300, Strafford 150
Kickapoo 200, Norwood 250
FZW 500, Norwood 170
Richland 360, Hallsville 270
FZW 360, Richland 200
Junior Varsity Scores
El Dorado 160, Hallsville 280
FZW 490, Waynesville 10
Kickapoo 140, Salem 200
El Dorado 160, Kickapoo 190
FZW 430, Hallsville 200
Salem 180, Waynesville 110
El Dorado 70, FZW 440
Hallsville 280, Salem 220
Kickapoo 240, Waynesville 90
FZW 420, Kickapoo 110
Hallsville 370, Salem 170
FZW 320, Hallsville 190
I will compile individual statistics and other information for my Observations packet tomorrow.
Bob and Roger, thanks for a great tournament! We love the trophies! We were able to present them to our assistant principal who happened to be in the building when we returned.
Charles and company, thanks for quality questions! This is exactly what MSHSAA is hoping to see - 50 question set, math, great questions with multiple clues! We loved the 2-part bonus questions since they were actually real questions rather than just tell the author of a book!
<div class="editby">Edited by <a href='http://s4.zetaboards.com/Academic_Compe ... 9041/'>FZW Coach</a>, Oct 18 2009, 10:54:17 AM.</div>
Also, did you play your B team (which if I recall correctly, had quite a few Juniors) as JV?
<div class="editby">Edited by <a href='http://s4.zetaboards.com/Academic_Compe ... arbroil</a>, Oct 17 2009, 06:02:14 PM.</div>