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Brain games come to OES



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Oxford Elementary student Karson Ulatowski (left) plans his move as he competes against a student from Detroit Public Schools. Photos by Andrew Moser. (click for larger version)
October 19, 2011 - Students from around Oxford and metro Detroit flexed their mental muscles Saturday morning as Oxford Elementary hosted their region's first official Michigan League of Academic Games tournament of the school year.

When the games were complete, the team from Oxford placed first in High Average and had the highest score of the tournament.

This is the second month in a row Oxford won both categories, as they placed first in a warm-up tournament in Detroit last month.

Approximately 43 students from OES and eight students from Rochester competed against 45 students from Detroit Public Schools during the tournament.

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This year Oxford will be competing in the Detroit Public School region.

According to Oxford Elementary Principal Jeff Brown, the reason for the switch in regions is one of their coaches, Connie Ginste, became the director of the Detroit Public School region.

Covering math, English, social studies and logic, the primary purpose of the Academic Games is to make learning fun in subjects that students may find boring or unchallenging in the classroom.

According to Brown, he sees a lot more student driven coaching due to the program being in its second year of existence.

"It's nice to have kids that can actually coach some of the other kids. Last year it was very much a coach driven program, but this year the kids are able to lead their friends and teach a lot of their friends, so that has been a really nice shift and has made it a lot easier," he said.

Brown noted more parents were getting involved as well.

"If you drop into one of our practices, we have up to 10 parents that are there that are all helping, whereas last year they all had to stand around because they didn't know the games as well yet," he added.

Brown said the goal for this year was to qualify for the national tournament in Georgia.

Andrew Moser is a staff writer for the Oxford Leader.
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