PALMDALE — Palmdale School District’s sixth annual Black Knowledge Bowl was held virtually this year on Wednesday. But the virtual venue did not change the level of competition or excitement.
Four preliminary rounds had been held prior to the championship round. Fifty-two students representing 26 schools trained and after the preliminary rounds 14 students went on to Wednesday’s championship round.
At the end of the 90-minute Kahoot competition, three students won trophies.
Summerwind Elementary School fourth-grade student Elizabeth Onwuka won with a perfect score, not missing a single question. Finishing in second place was fifth-grader Josephine Bowden from Ocotillo Elementary School. Third place went to fifth-grader Diego Calderon from Chaparral Elementary School.
Local historian Jamaal Brown, who designed the 365 Days of Black Facts Calendar, created and began hosting the Black Knowledge Bowl six years ago. Co-hosting was Palmdale School District’s director of Equity and Access, Gerald Luke.
Superintendent Raul Maldonado and Donna Campbell, assistant superintendent of Student Services, were on hand to watch the competition. Family members from San Diego to Texas logged in to watch and cheer in the chat for their favorite competitor.
Each team of two students worked with coaches from their sites to prepare for the competition. Students needed to research in order to complete a nine-page study guide that they would need to answer questions. Some questions were used in the preliminary rounds and some were unique to the championship round. Topics included African-American television, Black Music, Inventions, and African-American Artists.
Students who won the March 17 preliminary round and went on to the championship round included Shunne Thompson (Shadow Hills Magnet Academy), Saniya Lane (SAGE Magnet Academy) and Casey Culver (David G. Millen Magnet Academy).
Winners in the March 18 preliminary round were Elizabeth Ekenedilichukwu Onwuka (Summerwind Elementary School), Olivia Iwuchukwu (Ocotillo Elementary School) and Josephine Bowden (Ocotillo Elementary School).
The March 19 round sent Alexander Savala (Quail Valley Elementary School), Diego Calderon (Chaparral Elementary School) and Erin Campbell (Quail Valley Elementary School).
March 30 was the last preliminary qualifying round; the winners were Kalisha Stribling (Tamarisk Elementary School), Vincent Navarrette (Manzanita Elementary School), Ashley Saragoza (Tamarisk Elementary School), Amiya Chapman (Desert Rose Elementary School) and David Carrillo (Desert Rose).
At the end of the competition coaches praised not only their team but all students who put a great deal of effort into learning the nine pages of facts that made up the questions. Several people stated that students had learned a great deal about culture and world history. The annual Black Knowledge Bowl is open to all Palmdale School District students.