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Ruffin Writers. Training for Question Writers for CCSD Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl. Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl. Started in DeKalb County Georgia Book Award chapter book nominees

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ruffin writers

Ruffin Writers

Training for Question Writers for

CCSD Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl

helen ruffin reading bowl
Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl
  • Started in DeKalb County

  • Georgia Book Award chapter book nominees

  • Expanded to middle school using the Georgia Book Award chapter book nominees
  • Expanded to high school using Georgia Peach Teen nominees

Meet ..
  • Helen Ruffin, retired media specialist Sky Haven Elementary, DeKalb County
  • Dr. April Ruffin, relative of Helen Ruffin who attends the CCSD HRRB
competition format
Competition Format
  • 6 rounds
  • 10 questions per round
  • 5 members on each team
  • 2 teams each round (rotate)
  • Team members respond individually
  • 10 points for each correct answer
  • Cumulative Score for all 6 rounds determines 1st and 2nd place
  • Everyone who participates is a winner!
  • All teams receive a participation trophy!
advancing to the regional bowl
Advancing to the Regional Bowl
  • Top 2 scoring teams in each division receive first and second place trophies
  • These teams are determined by cumulative scores for all 6 rounds
room volunteers
Room Volunteers
  • Moderator:
    • Reads rules each round
    • Reads questions
    • Determines if answer is correct
    • Makes sure rules are followed
  • Console Judge
    • Operates the lockout device
    • Recognizes student who buzzes in first
    • May assist moderator in determining if answer is correct
  • Score Keeper
    • Keeps score on board
    • Completes score sheet
    • May assist moderator in determining if answer is correct
  • Time Keeper
    • Uses a watch with a second hand to track 10 second time limits
    • Task may be assigned to score keeper or console judge
as you write questions remember
As you write questions remember …
  • The competition should be fun
  • The room volunteers have not read the books
  • All possible versions of an answer should be given
always start questions
Always start questions

In the book <book title>, …For example:In the book Elsewhere, what are Observation Decks?

indicating answers
Indicating answers ….

p. #, answerFor example:p.64, places where you can see all the way to Earth

things to think about
Things to think about …
  • Is the question based on facts?
  • Is the question clearly stated?
  • Does the answer have too many parts (beyond 3 parts is too many, you could ask for 3 out of 7 from a list)?
  • Can the question be answered differently depending on the point in the story?
  • Do not use Yes/No and Either/Or type of questions
things to think about1
Things to think about …
  • Is a full name required or will just the first or last name suffice? (Liz Hall or just Liz)
  • Moderators and other volunteers have not necessarily read the book so list all acceptable answers (i.e. Mein Kampf or My Life or My Struggle)
things to think a bout
Things to think about …
  • There may be a very interesting fact in the story …
  • But it may be too hard to word a question clearly …
  • So just go on to something else!
  • There are lots of possible questions!
in the following slides
In the following slides
  • Read the question and answer
  • Determine if the question is
    • Good – acceptable for reading bowl
    • Bad – needs to be rewritten for clarity before being used for the reading bowl
    • Ugly – wrong facts; correct facts and rewrite or throw out and try another question
good bad or ugly
Good, Bad, or Ugly?
  • In the book Green Angel, what are the three colors of stones and what did each represent?
  • p.27, black for her mother, silver for her father, and pure white for her sister
  • Good!!!
good bad or ugly1
Good, Bad, or Ugly?
  • In the book Notes From the Midnight Driver, what book did Alex bring Sol for Hanukkah?
  • p.92, Monk
  • Bad!!!
  • The question should read what is the title of the book that Alex brought Sol for Hanukkah?
good bad or ugly2
Good, Bad, or Ugly?
  • In the book Phineas L. MacGuire Erupts!, who are the authors?
  • title page, Frances O'Roark Dowell and Preston McDaniels
  • Ugly!!!
  • Frances O’Roark Dowell is the author and Preston McDaniels is the illustrator.
let s write some questions
Let’s write some questions!
  • Go to
  • Under more choose Books
  • Search Books: Here Lies the Librarian
  • 1st result – click on title
  • Use arrows above book cover to “turn” to page 1
  • Read chapter 1 (p.1-11)
  • Write 2 questions.
practice entering into the spreadsheet database
Practice entering into the spreadsheet/database
  • Go to
  • Choose Question Writer Volunteers
  • Download the Excel spreadsheet (save to your directory)
  • Enter your 2 questions and save
time to choose books
Time to choose books!
  • “Pass the hat”
  • Pick one at a time
  • One “hat” for GA Book Award Books
  • Another “hat” for Peach Teen books
questions from the whole book
Questions from the whole book!
  • The 10 questions for each book need to cover the entire book, beginning to end
  • Total Pages ÷10 = section
  • Then make 1 question from each section of the book
tending to grace has 176 pages
Tending to Grace has 176 pages!
  • 176 ÷ 10 = 17.6 or 18 pages
  • Sections:

1-18, 19-36, 37-54, 55-72, 73-90

91-108, 109-126, 127-144,


You will write 2 questions for each section of your book!


Email your question database file (Peach Teen and chapter book) to Kate Lyons at k9lyons@yahoo.comPlease complete your questions for all 4 books by June 1st!

now it s your turn
Now it’s your turn -
  • It is highly recommended that you read the entire book before writing questions
  • This will alert you to possible questions that could be answered differently at different points in the story
  • So go ahead and read your book … ENJOY!
  • Then go back and write questions.
final words
Final Words …
  • The Reading Bowl should be fun!
  • The Reading Bowl cannot happen without your help!