Originally Posted by mattack
I watched the Spelling Bee (ESPN and/or ESPN2), Geography Bee (PBS - though maybe not an official PBS show), History Bee (History) over the weekend.
Originally, the National Geographic Bee (it was originally called the National Geography Bee but changed its name a few years ago) was produced by a PBS station, but I think National Geographic Channel (which also airs it) produces it now.
Speaking of the National Geographic Bee: I missed it, and heard that there were some changes to the format - something about "challenge questions" and earning points rather than the old "two-misses-and-out" method. Does anybody have any particulars on this?
The (first) History Bee was ridiculous. These were supposedly champion kids, and all of the questions were VERY easy. I knew the vast vast majority of them off the top of my head. They were basically all the kinds of questions you'd hear on game shows (Jeopardy, Who Wants to be a Millionaire, etc.), and towards the EASIER end of the scale for Jeopardy!
Easy for adults, but remember, these are middle school students. How many kids (how many adults, for that matter) know who the third member of the Apollo XI crew was?
My two main problems with the History Bee were, there was a broad definition of history (a considerable number of questions were more "civics" or "political science" than history), and it came across as half history and half World Series of Pop Culture
. (They're giving out a $50,000 scholarship in part on who knows something about the TV series M*A*S*H
? Just because it ended before these kids were born doesn't make it "history".)