Students in Mrs. Jennifer Wheatley’s talented and gifted classroom have been studying Italy and it’s culture the past few months which was the theme for this year’s state Extemporé competition. Extemporé is an academic competition that combines risk-taking, creativity, communication, problem solving and teamwork to solve extemporaneous challenges in a competitive setting. This year there were 120 teams participating from across the state at the competition that took place at Raymore-Peculiar’s high school on Saturday, April 30th.
Rich Hill took teams from 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, and JH. Each team spent several hours after school writing and practicing their dialogue for the performance portion of the competition. Teams are given 30 minutes of preparation time the day of the contest to add up to 5 items to their skit. This can include a word, line of dialogue, prop, character and/or action depending on the their arena. The day of the competition teams are scored on this performance and three more “AHA” challenges that they complete during the day. Those teams receiving recognition at the awards assembly were the 5th grade “Ricotta” Team who received 1st place in the showtime category.
The 4th grade “Rift” team received 3rd place in the showtime category. Mrs. Wheatley says, “while not everyone received a ribbon or medal at the end of the day, everyone put in a lot of hard work and did a fantastic job. Several students who thought they would be “too nervous” to perform in front of people did just that without a problem.”
Students also have a chance to demonstrate their knowledge in a scholar competition and compete in “Thinkers Hall” playing chess, checkers, and mancala. As part of the theme this year students also got the chance to play in a Bocce Tournament.
Students enjoyed a stop at McDonalds in Harrisonville for dinner and ice cream on the trip back to Rich Hill. The bus pulled back in the parking lot here in Rich Hill at 7:30 pm resulting in a 12 hour Saturday for this group of students.
Each team participating is asked to send a volunteer to serve as a judge the day of the competition. The judges must arrive at 7:30 am for training and then stay until the last team is scored in their particular event. Mrs. Wheatley would like to thank those family members and teachers who gave up their Saturday to serve as judges. They were Mr. Brian Gillis, Mr. Paul Brown, Mrs. Cheryl Jarred, and Mr. Doug Abend. Several parents also volunteered to chaperone teams during the day whose help is also very much appreciated.