The Middle School Tenacity Challenge competition consists of three events centered around the theme of leadership, empowerment and tenacity. The competition was held on April 28, 2018. Each 6-7 member team will determine its own division of labor in order to prepare for the three events: Leadership Action Project, Math Quiz Bowl Challenge, and Global Voices Literary Analysis.
Our 2018 Middle School Tenacity Challenge included student teams from the following local middle schools:
The leadership project focuses on the Tenacity team organizing with other students to mobilize change within the school community. Teams are asked to identify a problem or issue within their school community. Beginning October 1st, Tenacity team members must devise and enact a plan to raise awareness and educate their community on the issue. The issue may be anything of importance to the team; including, but not limited to a social, environmental or political concern. The plan must include action steps to not only raise awareness, but also steps that may be taken to address this challenge. It is important to note that not all steps to “solve” or address the issue must be taken prior to the creation of the presentation of the project and the overall purpose is not to “solve” the issue.
- A description of and rationale for why the topic was chosen
- A description of what steps were taken to raise awareness and/or address the issue
- A description of the challenges faced during the development and implementation process
- A reflection on what impact was made on the school community and/or school culture as a result of the leadership project. What evidence will show some quantitative or qualitative way to analyze impact?
Prior to the competition, students should have engaged in a sustained study of one or more books. Choosing from a list of titles, students will compose a creative response, which may be a poem, an original song with lyrics and musical score, letter to a major character, a letter from a major character to a leader or influential person connected to the time or struggle, or an additional scene or sequel event to the story. Student Tenacity Teams selected one of the three books below and then creatively presented the major themes using the stage in our auditorium.
The three literature options in the 2018 Middle School Tenacity Challenge included:
by Wes Moore
Two kids with the same name were born blocks apart in the same decaying city within a few years of each other. One grew up to be a Rhodes Scholar, army officer, White House Fellow, and business leader. The other is serving a life sentence in prison. Here is the story of two boys and the journey of a generation.
by Linda Sue Park
A Long Walk to Water is a short novel written by Linda Sue Park and published in 2010. It includes the true story of Salva Dut, a part of the Dinka tribe and a Sudanese Lost Boy, and the fictional story of Nya, a young village girl that was a part of the Nuer tribe. Park used this book as a platform to support Dut's program, Water for South Sudan.
by Julia Alvarez
Anita de la Torre never questioned her freedom living in the Dominican Republic. But by her 12th birthday in 1960, most of her relatives have emigrated to the United States, her Tío Toni has disappeared without a trace, and the government's secret police terrorize her remaining family because of their suspected opposition of el Trujillo's dictatorship.Using the strength and courage of her family, Anita must overcome her fears and fly to freedom, leaving all that she once knew behind.From renowned author Julia Alvarez comes an unforgettable story about adolescence, perseverance, and one girl's struggle to be free.
Math quiz bowl was held in the John Glenn Middle School gym and each team consisted of three members. The team determines the division of responsibilities.
- All teams will compete at the same time and will have an equal opportunity to answer all questions.
- The moderator will read the question.
- After the question is read, teams will have a designated amount of time to answer each question.
- Times will vary depending on the difficulty of the question and the amount of calculation required.
Questions for the quiz bowl will be drawn from the subjects of Pre-Algebra, Algebra, and Geometry
John Matthew Borders IV is the 2018 Middle School Tenacity Challenge Key Note Speaker. Below is his biography.
In Jan. 2013, When Borders joined the Office of Governor Deval L. Patrick as the Director of Online Media and Communications, one of his desires was to revive the Bay State Briefs (a biweekly recap featuring a behind the scenes look highlighting the Governor's work). After serving in this capacity, he transitioned to his post as the Deputy Director of Community Affairs. Not long after which Borders accepted an opportunity to serve as the Director of Special Projects and Engagements for the Executive office of Education under then Sec. Matt Malone. In Sept. 2014, Borders joined the Boston Celtics as the Community Engagement Manager where he still serves. The majority of his work consists of leading all of the team's educational initiatives under the umbrella of Corporate Partnerships.
More information, including registration details, can be found online about our Middle School Tenacity Challenge.