Success Stories: COBIS Award and 60 medals at The World Scholar’s Cup

One of our Year 13 students, who got COBIS (The Council of British International Schools) Award for the outstanding achievements told us about the prestigious intellectual games he takes part in. It’s called The World Scholar’s Cup and reaches tens of thousands of students in dozens of countries.

From this talk, you will learn about Frankenstein teams, some preparation tips, and useful school activities, a bit of Chinese mythology and more.

Improbable world

The World Scholar’s Cup is an academic competition that I have participated in for at least 5 years now. It revolves around debating, quizzes, writing essays and so on. I enjoy it very much because it makes you learn some new things on top of what you study at school. Stuff like mythology, law, medicine and so on. Each year is unique and has a specific theme.

– What’s the theme this year and last year?

Last year`s theme was called “The Improbable World”. Basically there are 6 subjects for each season. There is always a science subject, history, social studies, literature, art and then there is a thing called Special area. It is completely different each year. For the Improbable world, we have studied Mythology. Which was actually an interesting subject because there is a lot in the Mythology that I never knew about. It was a great opportunity to learn and debate about it.

– Who is your favourite mythology hero?

I remember one Chinese myth explaining why there is only one sun. In Chinese mythology, there were 10 suns that would cross the sky one by one, but one day all 10 suns came out at once, and the temperature on earth became unbearably hot. A certain archer whose name was Hou Yi shut down 9 of the 10 suns with his bow made of tiger bones and arrows made of dragon tendons. He was awarded elixir of immortality for it.

– What subjects here at BISU help you or give you some background for the successful participation?

Probably English. English is very beneficial in terms of the construction of sentences when you are debating and writing essays and so on. Sometimes in order to understand some of the concepts, you need things like Biology, Physics, Chemistry, especially in Science.

– So you are the one who prepares the team for the Round, for the contest. How long have you been doing it? How many people are on the team?

I have been doing it since last year. Initially, when I have started the call I only had one team. They are the students who I am with right now. We are now delegating tests to each other in order to manage the call effectively. There are two boys from Year 10 I believe. It was quite an adorable thing to teach them how to debate, how to write an essay and so on because they all quite enjoy it. That really motivated me to continue to teach them. Last year it was only one team. This year there are two more teams who joined, which is exciting actually. One team has 3 people, so there are 9 of us.

– What are you doing at your rehearsals?

Sometimes we are making notes for the syllables, sometimes we are debating, and sometimes we are playing Kahoot to emulate the quizzes that are happening at the competition and sometimes we just discussing on what we should do, because sometimes I have this mental pause when I do not know what I want to.

– Your ultimate goal is to win something or you just enjoy being the part of it?

It is just for fun honestly. First seasons that I`ve participated in was for the gold medals because there are a lot of them and it feels very nice when you get them. But at this point, it is just for the fun of it, for participating, communicating with other people from all around the globe. I mean I made a lot of friends just for this competition, from Slovenia, Australia, a few from China, some Canadians. In order to pond effectively with them, you need to prepare for the competition in order to initiate conversation. For example, most of the people who I am friends with to this day I met through participating in as they call it the Debate Showcase. Basically, the most high-scoring debaters in the competition are invited to the stage. They are united into what I call Frankenstein teams where a single speaker’s taken from a completely different school, country, team and they have to communicate with people from different teams and countries, and then debate another team who is also a kind of this Frankenstein team. It really allows you to get to know a person, to see how they deal with such tests under stress because you literally have 50 minutes to prepare and then you have to debate in front of all the participants who are in the competition. It is fun but it is scary the first time you do it.

– How many awards have you collected so far?

Overall for all my participation in The WSC, I have like 60 medals and 6 trophies or something. Probably more, because I`ve lost a few of them.

– No wonder you have been nominated for the COBIS award for outstanding achievements. Thank you for sharing it was really motivating.


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