Seattle Public Schools

Loyal Heights Takes Top Spot in Global Reading Challenge 

Summary: Loyal Heights Elementary students took home the trophy in the 2024 Global Reading Challenge!

Loyal Heights Elementary Wins the 2024 Global Reading Challenge 

After an intense tiebreaker round, the Loyal Heights Sparky Beavers walked away as the winners of the 29th Annual Global Reading Challenge. 

The Sparky Beavers edged out Thornton Creek’s Reputation Readers after a nail-biting round of tiebreaker questions. Throughout their run in the challenge, the Sparky Beavers never missed a question, putting up an impressive 90 correct answers! 

Sponsored by Seattle Public Library (SPL), The Global Reading Challenge (GRC) is a reading incentive program for 4th and 5th graders enrolled in Seattle Public Schools. Students form teams and read selected books then take part in a trivia competition. Over the course of three rounds, judges ask the teams a few questions about each book – 24 questions in total. 

There were 495 teams districtwide with 70 going to the semifinals and nine making it to the finals. Those teams were:  

  • Bailey Gatzert, 70% Water    
  • Beacon Hill, Super Seven  
  • John Muir, Potatoes of JM           
  • Loyal Heights, The Sparky Beavers 
  • Madrona, Spaghetti Cats    
  • North Beach, Fuengo Pengoes     
  • Stevens, Tango Mangoes 
  • Thornton Creek, Reputation Readers    
  • Thurgood Marshall, The Crescent Moons   

Meet The Sparky Beavers of Loyal Heights

Seven students stand together in front of a sign that says Take the Global Reading Challenge 2024

Members of The Sparky Beavers were fifth graders Asah Douanghprachanh, Cathrine Hockett, Myles Nagtalon and team captain Nora Fentin along with fourth graders Klara Randolph, Lucy Huss, and Madison Covich. 

Loyal Heights’ librarian, Colette Blangy, helped guide the team. She said having students participate in the GRC builds growth in their skills and their confidence.   

“The Global Reading Challenge brings together strong readers and emerging readers in a way that all can be successful,” Blangy said. “I’ve seen the confidence in my struggling readers grow by leaps and bounds as they become members of a team.” 

SPL supplies the books, providing over 8,000 copies – accessible in a variety of formats and languages – to Seattle’s public elementary schools. 

Blangy said the books for each year’s challenge are curated in such a way that every student can find something that interests them.  

“The fact that SPL makes the books so accessible to kids really makes the program work equitably,” she said. “My favorite part of the challenge is walking around during our meetings and listening to our students really talking about books. It never gets old.” 

Read more about the Global Reading Challenge.

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