Can you name the Pixar character whose name is a verb which means “to move with sudden speed,” or the number of warriors in The Terracotta Army of the first Emperor of China? More than 100 students from 17 schools in Hong Kong, Macau, and China had to answer such questions at an annual competition which tested their general knowledge.
Mind Over Matter: Hong Kong Inter-School Quiz was held at German Swiss International School (GSIS) on September 22. The participants were divided into groups of three and they were tested over eight rounds on a variety of topics including comics, cartoons, history, literature, music, sports, science, and Hong Kong.
Young Post was there and we asked some of the teams about their preparation and strategies for the event.
We caught up with Valerie Chan, 16, and Clarissa Leung, 17, from Marymount Secondary School, just before the preliminary round began. They said they were “slightly anxious” but also confident because they had searched the internet thoroughly for all kinds of facts leading up to the quiz.
Darren Lau, 14, Marvin Hsu and Tiffany Chu, both 16, took a different approach. The trio from Sha Tin College practised using sample questions, which helped them do well in the final Hong Kong round.
Participants were tested on all topics during the first half of the competition, with the six best-performing teams going through to the finals. The finalists were: French International School, Renaissance College, Kiangsu Chekiang College, American International School (AIS), Hong Kong International School (HKIS) and GSIS.
To compete for the championship, each of the six teams had to first choose five questions from any of the eight topics. Among all categories, geography, history, science and technology were the top picks. The teams were neck and neck at the end of this round.
Then came the buzzer round, the most intense stage of the competition, when points were deducted for wrong answers. This led to most teams taking a cautious approach and resulted in another tight finish. In the end, Maximillian Dany Hauschildt,15, Sakshi Gupta, 14, and Kathlyn Tham, 16, from Kiangsu Chekiang College proved to be worthy winners as they took home the championship.
Their victory was all the more sweeter because the school had won the event for the first time after being a finalist for many years.
The champions’ initial reaction was: “We are absolutely ecstatic, we didn’t expect to win!” Maximillian added: “In the last round, we played safe and didn’t answer any of the questions.” It was a strategy they adopted, he added, so that they didn’t lose the points they had earned.
Paarban Nath, 15, Alexander Malcolm Patel, 17, and George John Alex, 16, from AIS, took second place just a point behind the winner, while Rex Chan, Dhruv Vishwanath, and Zirun Han of HKIS came third.grea
Any tips for students interested in joining next year’s quiz? Maximillian’s advice was to stay curious, and “pay attention to your everyday life ... [Then] without realising, you will gain more [general] knowledge than you know”.