This year, 8 of my students participated in the World Scholar’s Cup in Amman, seven from sixth grade and one from seventh.
We arrived for the two-day competition early on Friday morning at the International Amman Academy (aka Queen’s School). The students were understandably visibly nervous but also very excited. There were at least seven of Amman’s top schools participating and all my sixth graders were new to the competition.
The Amman Academy has a beautiful campus. Its grounds are enormous and it has a view of the dome of the King Hussein Mosque. Everything is spick and span, but the buildings also feel a little cold on the inside. I was unable to decide whether I liked the school or not. The theater where the competition was held, however, is amazing! State of art with spotlights and smoke machines and very comfortable seats.
The World Scholar’s Cup is a global annual competition that aims to encourage children to develop a love of learning and academic competition. Each year there is a different theme and different topics across six subjects. Students engage in a variety of academic competitions, both individual and team-work, from writing to debating. The top performers qualify to compete in the global round which is being held in a different country each year.
After two long and trying days (I was an adjudicator on the first day and I had a sick student on the second), the awards were finally handed out. It was as heart-wrenching as it was exciting to watch. My students were so invested in the outcome, with one surprising us and winning a total of 11 medals!! Some of my other top students were very upset when they only won a couple of medals, but in the end every single one of them qualified to go on to compete in the global round in Bangkok in June!
I was so proud and excited for them that it’s really rather embarrassing.
Unfortunately, I cannot include photos in this post (though I have hundreds) because I am not comfortable with publicly publishing images of my students. You’ll just have to imagine dozen smiling faces and the pride in their eyes throughout and at the end of the competition.