Jefferson Lab Announces Results of 2021 Middle School Science Bowl

  • 2021 Va. Regional Middle School Science Bowl Winning Team from Rocky Run Middle School

Rocky Run Middle School, located in Chantilly, Virginia, has won the 2021 Virginia Regional Middle School Science Bowl Competition. Shown here are coaches Sheeba Balachandran and Sumesh Shivdas with team members Arnav Bandam, Samarth Bhargav, Avery Li, Raghav Karthikeyan and Aaryan Sumesh.

Rocky Run Middle School has won the 2021 Virginia Regional Middle School Science Bowl Competition

NEWPORT NEWS – This past weekend, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility hosted the 2021 Virginia Regional Middle School Science Bowl competition. Out of 14 competing teams from 11 schools, Rocky Run Middle School - Team 1, took first place and the honor of representing Virginia in the national competition this spring.

“What a great competition from a great group of students! I’m especially impressed with everyone’s willingness to adapt to this year's virtual format. Looking forward to seeing everyone in person next year,” said Steve Gagnon, a Jefferson Lab Science Education staff member and the lead organizer of the event.

In addition, the winning team also received a team trophy, individual participant medals, a Virginia Regional Science Bowl banner and $750 to be used toward its STEM programs. Other top-placing teams were also awarded. Nysmith School for the Gifted, which placed second, earned a team trophy and $500; BASIS Independent McLean - Team 1, which placed third, earned a team trophy and $300; and the team from Colvin Run Elementary School, which placed fourth, earned a team trophy.

The National Science Bowl is billed as a “Competition Like No Other,” and this year’s competition was truly unique, as it was the first such to be held virtually. Rather than facing off head-to-head in heated matches, each team had the opportunity to answer 15 toss-up questions per round, with each worth four points. Correct toss-up answers unlocked additional bonus questions, which were worth an additional 10 points when answered correctly. Each team’s total points were tallied and compared to determine the top-placing teams in what are traditionally round robin and elimination rounds.

Each team was comprised of three-five middle school students and a teacher or parent who serves as both advisor and coach. Participating teams were quizzed on their knowledge of math and a range of science disciplines, including energy, life science, math, physical science, and earth and space.

As the top-placing team at the Virginia regional competition, Rocky Run Middle School will represent Virginia at the National Science Bowl® finals this spring. There, they will compete against other top teams from across the country. Preliminary rounds will be held virtually in April, and the top 32 high schools will then compete in the virtual elimination tournament on May 8.

The National Science Bowl® has been sponsored annually by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science since 1991. Since its inception, approximately 315,000 middle and high school students have participated in tournaments around the country. The competition is meant to encourage students to excel in math and science and to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and math.

The DOE’s Office of Science manages the National Science Bowl® and sponsors the finals competition. The Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time.

To learn more about DOE's National Science Bowl competition, visit: https://Science.Osti.Gov/Wdts/Nsb

For sample sets of questions and answers that have been used in previous competitions, visit: https://science.osti.gov/wdts/nsb/Regional-Competitions/Resources/MS-Sample-Questions

Contact: Kandice Carter, Jefferson Lab Communications Office, kcarter@jlab.org

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Jefferson Science Associates, LLC, a joint venture of the Southeastern Universities Research Association, Inc. and PAE, manages and operates the Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility, or Jefferson Lab, for the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science.

DOE’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, visit https://energy.gov/science.