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Reagan’s New Academic Decathlon Team Written by Diego de Haan
As all fans of Marvel’s Spider-Man: Homecoming know, the academic decathlon is a United States wide academic competition amongst students. This year, Reagan is starting their very own team. However, what isn’t shown in pop culture, is the complexity of the academic decathlon and the amount of effort competitors have to put in. The academic decathlon is a national tournament for students to demonstrate their knowledge. Teams go up against each other in a trivia-style competition. The history of academic decathlon goes back to 1968 when the first competition took place. Since then, the tournament has become a nationwide championship. Each year, the competition focuses on one specific theme. They cover topics from the natural world to the Renaissance era. Even in specific themes, the academic decathlon covers specific academic topics. They incorporate art, literature, economy, social sciences, music, science, and math into their competitions. This time around, the theme of the academic decathlon is the 1960s. Reagan’s team is trying to get in as much knowledge as they can about the 1960s.
Reagan’s new team meets every Wednesday. The biology teacher, Matthew Klansky administrates the team and helps them prepare for upcoming competitions. In his classroom, they practice upcoming competitions with some practice test provided form Academic Decathlon. The practices give the competitors a taste of some of the questions. The competitors try to get a taste of the tournament. An Academic Decathlon competition is extremely fast paced. Each team has only about 24 seconds to work on a question. Considering the difficulty of some questions, the pressure is intense.
Nonetheless, those on the team are loving it. Scoh Lonzaga said, “I joined to further my knowledge, improve my communication and meet new people.”
This is what another member, Daisy Kiekhofer had to say about joining the team, “I joined to put it on my college application, improve standardized testing scores, and overall, I have a passion to learn.” November 13th, 2018 was Reagan’s new team’s first academic decathlon competition. This is a local online competition where the team will challenge their skill against other schools. https://usad.org/About/Our-History.aspx